Robert Augustus Masters

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Green, So Green, Soaked in Green

  • June 18, 2015
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Kauai river


And the rain keeps coming, in vast slanted sheets, soft sprays, one-minute downpours, warm enough to keep us outside. Kauai’s North Shore. Diane and I are here for two weeks, following our final weeklong mixed group. Not that I mind the rain; I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and got used to rainy days filling much of the year. Outside our rental is nothing but jungle and a river sizeable enough to provide a delightfully rough music for long deep sleeps.


No need to wait for sun to go for a swim. The rain is warm. Our first day here we went to a beach where we swam, got rained on, and saw a rainbow that arced from the tip of a distant peninsula right to a patch of ultra-green pasture a stone’s throw from us. Later we found out that this beach is considered one of the most dangerous on Kauai. Beauty with a dark edge, all those who drowned here obscured by the rainbows and sheets of sun slipping between the rounds of rain.


We live in Ashland, Oregon, where the summers are dry and often very hot, with wildfires a regular occurrence, smudging the sky for days with ash and long-lingering smoke. No rain, except for a rare thunderstorm’s offering. And we also work in southern California from time to time. Far less rain than Ashland, water crises looming large. Greens browning well before Summer.


I love green. The rainforest tangles and mossy wonderlands of Vancouver Island’s west coast, the cozy emerald meadows of Ireland, the dripping jungles of Kauai. Green, so green, soaked in green, singing wild, often extravagant growth, such a richness of green bursting through the soil and air, birthing more green, more wild music, more life, breathing hugely, breathing me more here, rooting and expanding me.


So let the rain keep coming. Umbrellas are optional. Get wet. Water within, water without, with the flimsiest of membranes in between. What we truly are is not within or without, but is water meeting water, greened and awakened by the encounter.