A Night in Pondicherry

It started as a mizzle in the evening.
As the night came on it intensified.
When we turned in
It let up a bit but not quite.
We left a light on
Lest we sank into a slumber.
The mobile alarm was set at small hours—
An hour before the car was to arrive.

Changing position during fitful sleep
One sensed a tremolo of a torrent
Of a single continuous note
With no rise or fall in pitch
Sheeting down
No strong breeze accompanying.
I pulled the blanket up to my neck
And drifted back to sleep.

Coasting between sleeping and awakening
One was vaguely aware
Of this unceasing spell-of-rain
As if it would never stop
As if the whole world would be submerged
Before the night was out.

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