Rain Goddess: What I Learned As A Tourist in the Yucatan    

by Diane Wakoski 

The stones, not Olmec.

     Break your ankle
     against saw palmetto
     a slash of brawling
     foliage, unregulated

And no one navigates this without
Spanish little feet,
a rubber eraser and piece of charcoal
for the sketchpad /no one
talks of the back of
legs that will no longer
portage an old body

Someone tells a story
and someone gossips,
and someone tries to lecture and guide
but like lizards, we turn our backs to this sunny

The Rain God,
     I prefer to think of Her as a Goddess,
for silence, and She washes words
out of each tongue She touches. This
is a time when we re consider what She wants
for an offering.

I’ll tell you: It is your empty vessel self;
it is you, emptying all containers while awaiting
Her downpour. Water

is Her language, and She doesn’t need prayers
or words, incantations, or supplications. She desires
the emptiness that She might fill.

I know this and I shouldn’t
have to tell myself this,

but I do because while I have lived for words,
I know that I do not revere them.
They are no more
than comestibles,
used up
as necessary,

needing replenishment.

To enter the temple at the top of the stone ladder
would not be allowed unless
a worshipper were an empty / EMPTY
container. Rain Goddess
loves the empty and to do the filling /drums
and chants
will not summon Her splash.

NOTHING but an empty container
empty, empty, and
She might
     find you