This has been one tempestuous week in Chicagoland; today's storms felled trees all over town, roofs blew off, windows blew in. The tree in our front yard bowed lower than I had ever seen it bow, as if in submission to the unusually strong winds. It reminded me of the storms in Shakespeare, which were often augurs of significant events: the deaths of kings, imminent murders, the plots of traitors.
I was reminded, too, that Cassius, in Julius Caesar, walked the streets at night braving a storm like this, baring his chest and daring the lightning to strike it. His theory was that with Caesar in power, all was not right with the world, and the storm was an instrument of "fear and warning."
And of course the Tempest raised by Prospero was meant to be a storm of vengeance against the men who had betrayed him. Considering all of the rain we've had this week--and I'm talking violent rain, with weird lightning and odd-sounding thunder--I might even believe it if someone told me that the current weather was someone's act of revenge.
On the other hand, it's beautiful in a wild and frightening way. As long as I keep my roof and our tree doesn't fall on our house, I think we might make it through with a renewed appreciation for nature and some very green grass.