After Rain by Louise Boscacci

When it rains
the smell is not
petrichor but

a musty sickness stuck
to brittle

Underfoot and patient
after that long trace
calling up the blood
moon, mobile

networked ahead of all hotspot maps
and embers of rage, your damp ghost,
Fire, candles our shaky


I heard the cuckoo-shrike
afternoon cloud
the scarp
flat, black-faced
at birth, no silent
evacuee smudged
by carbon’s
terror plume.

Good Luck Bird,
Molly Aura, Fortune-sifter,
Greyscale Glider,
Canopy Seer. Good
luck, bird.

Behind the over-cooked
pot, umber water jar
rent by heat
in those early
hours you slept unbroken
with kiln free to run,
leaf shards
huddle where
they dropped the night
we ran once,
twice, three times
from fire’s arc.

Country of the faeries
no more, flammagenitus*
bears dry dead
thunder. Pyro-crickets
underground queue after
rain to resurface.

—January 7, 2020.

*A flammagenitus, from Cumulus flammagenitus, is a fire cloud commonly known as a pyrocumulus. The most intense version is a pyrocumulonimbus, capable of generating its own thunderstorm of lightning and black hail, and casting embers kilometres ahead to spark new blazes. (WMO, International Cloud Atlas,

From: Boscacci, Louise, “After Rain” in Landscapes: the Journal of the International Centre for Landscape and Language, 10 (1), 2020, p. 8.

Date: 2020

By: Louise Boscacci (19??- )


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