Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Aurora Musis Amica

Aurora musis amica.
Dawn is friend of the muses.

"The grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls." --John Muir

Here I am contemplating the dawn again. This early morning time has become irresistible, a date with my thoughts and with awesome splendor. Often there are no words that can express the awareness of the universe as I watch light wash over the horizon.

Waking early is no problem for me; the creaking and aching of age keep me from finding joy in the long hours of sleeping in that were such a treat when I was younger. So, I guess it is a good thing that I find so much satisfaction in greeting the dawn. This morning I hoped to explore taking low light pictures with my camera. In the past this has created photos of the deepest black with no retrievable image. But… I read a book….

Stars wink out one by one, lines of softly glowing white clouds begin billowing above the hill, a hint of gold, then a burst of flaming vermilion so bold that it nearly shouts through the slowly retreating dark. I lean far out the window with the unexpressed futile thought that those few extra inches will get me close enough to catch the color through the darkness. Trying to find a good spot to rest my camera, I catch a small movement from the corner of my eye. Turning away from light over the hills toward the trees at the edge of the wood, I can barely make out a fox high stepping through the snowdrifts. For long minutes I scarcely breathe as it makes its way along the edge of the clearing and up the hill where the trees hide it’s progress. The sky warms… light expanding… colors exploding against the sky. At first I simply stand in awe, forgetting my camera, simply drinking in the kaleidoscope of light and colors. The snow is a glittering prism refracting hue upon hue --- I close my eyes and still the luminous colors wash over me filling my soul with something that is beyond the words in my vocabulary. I stand awash in awe.

Movement below me in the clearing draws my attention from the sky; the fox is again strolling across the clearing. I can see now the markings on its face and back; it is a Gray Fox. A new visitor here; before the Red Fox has been an occasional visitor. He sees me and, moving quickly, he heads back into the woods keeping too much to the shadows for me to get a picture.

I begin to turn to unload the camera. Yet, the heavenly show is not finished. A new spectacular begins as the sun peeks over the hill. Wind driven clouds catch rainbows of light. Ribbons of light burst from the hills reaching ever upward into the heavens. "For me, a landscape does not exist in its own right, since its appearance changes at every moment; but the surrounding atmosphere brings it to life - the light and the air, which vary continually. For me, it is only the surrounding atmosphere, which gives subjects their true value." - Claude Monet

Oh, the light. The light. The light! Clouds race across the sky. Huge dark clouds move in covering the sun, returning the landscape to cold winter gloom. Wind bows the trees, plays chess or checkers moving the clouds across the sky --- Suddenly the light breaks through, illuminating the trees, turning the branches to gold and setting the clouds aglow again. I have spent three golden hours enveloped in wonder.

“The heavens declare the glory of God and the earth shows His handwork.” Psalm 19:1


Blogger tess said...

Hello, Carolyn!

These images, your words, and the spirit they all convey--are simply gorgeous! I have been in a period of considerable stress, made worse by the prolonged neglect of my morning walks. I had hoped that at least today (it being my birthday) I would finally get to my favorite sanctuary, a nearby Audobon nature preserve. Alas, I did not, but I almost felt as if I had when I enjoyed the beauties of your morning. Thank you! And thank your note to me, which meant very much to me. More soon.


11:50 PM  
Blogger Endment said...

Thank you for your comments tess
Hope you get a chance to get out to the nature preserve soon and I wish you a happy birthday.
I really enjoy your blog!

5:28 AM  
Anonymous kalyana said...


1:33 AM  

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