A Prayer for Rain

By Lisel Mueller b. 1924 Lisel Mueller
Let it come down: these thicknesses of air
have long enough walled love away from love;
stillness has hardened until words despair
of their high leaps and kisses shut themselves
back into wishing. Crippled lovers lie
against a weather which holds out on them,
waiting, awaiting some shrill sign, some cry,
some screaming cat that smells a sacrifice
and spells them thunder. Start the mumbling lips,
syllable by monotonous syllable,
that wash away the sullen griefs of love
and drown out knowledge of an ancient war—
o, ill-willed dark, give with the sound of rain,
let love be brought to ignorance again.


Originally appeared in the March 1964 issue of Poetry magazine.

“A Prayer for Rain” by Lisel Mueller is reprinted by permission of Louisiana State University Press.

Source: Poetry (February 2012).

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This poem originally appeared in the February 2012 issue of Poetry magazine

February 2012
 Lisel  Mueller

Biography

Poet and translator Lisel Mueller was born in Hamburg, Germany in 1924. The daughter of teachers, her family was forced to flee the Nazi regime when Mueller was 15. They immigrated to the US and settled in the Mid-west. Mueller attended the University of Evansville, where her father was a professor, and did her graduate study at Indiana University. Her collections of poetry include The Private Life, which was the 1975 Lamont . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Love, Heartache & Loss, Nature, Weather

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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