“But no doors slammed, no carpets took the soft tread of rubber heels…”

There Will Come Soft Rains

Ray Bradbury

In the living room the voice-clock sang, “Ticktock, seven o’clock, time to get up, time to get up, seven o ‘clock!” as if it were afraid that nobody would. The morning house lay empty. The clock ticked on, repeating and repeating its sounds into the emptiness. Seven-nine, breakfast time, seven-nine!
In the kitchen the breakfast stove gave a hissing sigh and ejected from its warm interior eight pieces of perfectly browned toast, eight eggs sunny side up, sixteen slices of bacon, two coffees, and two cool glasses of milk.
“Today is August 4, 2026,” said a second voice from the kitchen ceiling, “in the city of Allendale, California.” It repeated the date three times for memory’s sake. “Today is Mr. Featherstone’s birthday. Today is the anniversary of Tilita’s marriage. Insurance is payable, as are the water, gas, and light bills.” Somewhere in the walls, relays clicked, memory tapes glided under electric eyes.

Eight-one, tick-tock, eight-one o’clock, off to school, off to work, run, run, eight-one!” But no doors slammed, no carpets took the soft tread of rubber heels. It was raining outside.
The weather box on the front door sang quietly: “Rain, rain, go away; umbrellas, raincoats for today…”

Dolce Cadrà la Pioggia

Ray Bradbury

In salotto, l’orologio parlante cantava: «Tic-tac, son già le sette, alzati su! Alzati su, sono le sette!», quasi temesse che nessuno obbedisse. La casa mattutina restava deserta. L’orologio continuava a ticchettare, ripetendo e ripetendo il suo suono nel vuoto. «Sette e diciotto, l’ora della colazione, sette e diciotto!»
In cucina i fornelli della colazione sibilarono e dall’interno ardente della stufa il forno spinse fuori otto fette di pane tostato alla perfezione, otto uova all’occhio di bue su sedici fette di pancetta, due caffé e due bicchieri di latte freddo.
«Oggi è il 4 agosto 2026» disse una seconda voce dal soffitto della cucina «nella città di Allendale, in California.» Ripetè tre volte la data per il bene della memoria. «Oggi è il compleanno di Mr. Featherstone. Oggi è l’anniversario di matrimonio di Tilita. C’è da pagare l’assicurazione e anche le bollette di acqua, gas e luce.» Da qualche parte nel muro scattavano relay elettrici, nastri mnemonici scorrevano sotto occhi elettrici.
«Le otto, tic-tac, le otto in punto, presto a scuola, presto a lavoro, corri, corri, sono le otto!» Ma non si udiva nessuna porta, nessun tappeto risuonava il morbido passo di soprascarpe gommate. Fuori pioveva.
L’ altoparlante sopra la porta canticchiava a bassa voce: «Pioggia, pioggia, stai lontano ; tutti con l’ombrello in mano… »

Translation by Class 3F*, ISS “Giotto Ulivi”

I would like to thank my wonderful class for their time and effort: *C. Arinci, F. Bassani, F. Belli, S. Belli, E. Bettini, F. Bilotta, S. Bini, A. Brunetti, D, Brunetti, C. Caccamo, E. De Jesus Lago, G. Ferranti, S. Gamberi, A. Ghelardini, Y. Giorgi Degl’Innocenti, G. Longhi, G, Mansour, E. Marchi, C. Montuschi, G. Pettinelli, C. Pierangioli, H. Reyes Mejia, S. Rosi, G. Satta, G. Verdi, I. Villanelli, (and my wonderful colleague E. Agasisti).

We first started on this literary journey by studying Sara Teasdale. The idea that war can be taken so lightly by adults, by men in power, by governments, is something that is hard for anyone to get their head around…It is especially hard for young people. This may be because they have so much more life to live than we have, or simply because they are so much more sensitive to the world around them. In any case, what started with Teasdale’s poem There will come soft rains, where a ray of hope exists still–because, in fact, at least nature will go on; in Bradbury’s short story, destruction is all-embracing. In Bradbury’s piece, no house will survive, no tree nor shrub, no dog nor man…

The short story There will come soft rains is from the book The Martian Chronicles, 1950

Video: https://youtu.be/MUOSdYbEJdE

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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