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Summary of Rain in Summer by HW Longfellow

Summary of Rain in Summer by HW Longfellow
Coming up next: Rain in Summer by HW Longfellow: Analysis & Themes

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  • 0:04 Rain in Summer
  • 0:39 Summary of 'Rain in Summer'
  • 0:59 Welcome Rain
  • 1:32 What the Poet Sees
  • 2:25 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

There's just something about a good rainstorm in the summer, isn't there? Author Henry Wadsworth Longfellow certainly thought so, which is what led him to write 'Rain in Summer.' In this lesson, we'll summarize the poem.

Rain in Summer

If you've ever been to the beach in the summer, you know how hot the days are. Scorching temperatures and blazing sun make it an ideal playground for outdoor activities like swimming and beach volleyball. You probably also noticed that many summer evenings conclude with a thunderstorm, which seems to wipe away the heat of the day and resets everything in nature. Though it's not expressly about the beach, author and poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow thought so highly of a delightful summer shower that he penned a poem about it, ''Rain in Summer.'' In this lesson, we'll summarize the poem.

Summary of ''Rain in Summer''

Longfellow's poem opens with the line, ''How beautiful is the rain!'' The author describes the beauty of the rain in comparison to the dust and heat that rises up from the roads. He likens it to the ''tramp of hoofs'' on the rooftop, and remarks about how it overflows its spout, pouring swiftly like a river.

Welcome Rain

The rain is welcomed by a sick man, who observes it from his bedroom. It offers a cooling relief to his fever and it quiets ''his fevered brain.'' Longfellow also explains how a group of boys leave their school and go splashing down the street in the rain. Even the far-off leopard in the ''dry grass and the drier grain'' appreciates the rain.

Closer to home, the oxen lift their heads to thank the Lord for the brief break from their work, and the farmer himself is not even upset because the rain means that crops will grow for ''his own thrift and gain.''

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