Introduction:

‘An Evening Wet with Rain’ is a poem written by Ved Pal Deep. It is about the persona’s inner contemplation as he takes a walk in the rain in the evening. Tracing his thoughts, it includes vivid description of the rain as well. 

About the poet:

Ved Pal Deep (1929-1955) was a notable poet. His works are written in Dogri, a language specific to Kashmir. This famous work of him is a translated version by Shiv Nath.

Theme:

The theme of this poem revolves around the idea of silence and solitude. The poet’s persona ruminates as he takes a stroll in the rain, silence being his companion. Loss of hope can also be seen as a recurring theme in this poem.

Structure:

With the exception of the first stanza, every other stanza present in the poem is in the form of a quatrain. This poem is written in free verse, without an apparent rhyme scheme.

Stanza 1:

An evening wet with rain
As I walk through the lane
The heart beckons the hands to hold them with love
The mind also knows subtle signals of the breeze
Should I stand on the ground or waft with the wind?

The poem begins with how the persona is talking a walk in the rain. His heart wishes to hold the rain, even as he wants to become one with the breeze and gently drift away. The stanza ends with him pondering over these two wishes of his.

Stanza 2:

Windows, doors, awnings of the house are wet
Cool breezes stir the leaves of the yonder banyan tree
The collar of my coat is also wet with drops of rain
All around reigns silence.

This stanza has a vivid description of the rain. Here, the persona states how the rain makes everything wet with its touch, how a cool breeze accompanies it. Even his coat is seen to be dripping wet. The atmosphere is silent, almost eerily so. 

Stanza 3:

My feet are cold with water seeping through my shoes
My eyes are heavy with sleep, or is it fever?
The ground is very slippery; there is no place to stand.
The mind is exhausted, looks for some spot to rest.

In this stanza, a sense of gloominess settles over the poet’s persona. He is cold and exhausted, from sleep or fever, he knew not. There is no place to stand, no place to rest.

Stanza 4:

Loss of hope has darkened the evening of my life too
And clouds gathering in the mind shed tears as they pass
The evening of trouble, my companion, is also depressed
And takes me along, holding me by the arm.

A sense of desolation can be observed in this stanza. The darkness of the evening sky is compared to the darkness in the persona’s own life. He goes on to paint a glum picture of the rain, how the clouds seemed to shed tears. This is compared to his own, sorrow-filled mind. Here, the evening is described to be his equally depressed companion as they walk together, arm in arm.

Stanza 5:

In childhood, I stood alone in my courtyard
And waves of air brought the sound of cymbals
We regret that the days gone by don't return
How to call back times past and gone! 

The persona can be seen to be nostalgic in this stanza. He recalls how in his childhood, he had stood alone in his courtyard, observing the breezy air and its noisy sound. He regrets how the time had passed, how he could never return to his past days.

Stanza 6:

The evening prepares to go to sleep in the lap of night
Slowly, softly just as the sky's feet touch the ground
Shadows of trees rest in the dark tank
As some passing cloud casts a shadow over hills.

The stanza begins with a beautiful description on how the evening prepares for its sleep, its bed being the lap of night. A sense of end can be observed here as nature itself winds up for the day, long shadows already being cast.

Stanza 7:

There is activity in the houses lit with electric bulbs 
Moonlight laughs holding the hem of the moon.
Where is my destination? Where is the hurry?
Light of the earthen lamp in a wayside modest inn awaits me.

The poem ends with a portrayal of light, in moon and bulbs, as opposed to the gloomy darkness described before. A sense of happiness can be observed in the phrase ‘Moonlight laughs’. He contemplates on his destiny, on where life is taking him with such hurry, even as he makes his way to his well-lit modest inn. 

Conclusion:

This is a poem that portrays rain in a despondent way as against the romantic notions associated with it generally. He compares the darkness in his life to the darkness in the sky, using rain as his weapon.