"As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame; / [ . . . ] Each mortal thing does one thing and the same: / Deals out that being indoors each one dwells; / Selves -- goes itself; 'myself' it speaks and spells, / Crying 'What I do is me; for that I came'." --Gerard Manley Hopkins

22 February 2011

Light Beyond the Clouds

The morning after the full moon, which I had missed in the evening, I was driving along without thought of anything but the classes coming up, when I rounded the curve on the ferry road -- and there she was, Phoebe in all her harvest-moon glory, brilliant gold-orange, shining hugely behind the tree line. For a moment I literally couldn't breathe.

That was it. I couldn't see her any longer behind the trees, she was nowhere to be found when I reached the highway or the school. I wondered if I'd really seen her or she had sprung only to my imagination.
Later, K told me he'd seen her that morning, too, and she had disappeared almost instantly behind the horizon. I felt a little better about the state of my mind.

Yesterday, I glanced for her as I drove, hoping for a glimpse of her in her still near-full phase -- but the sky was cloudy and there was no sign. Nothing -- until I got out of the car in the parking lot and looked again, able now to concentrate on the sky, and there was her tell-tale glow beneath a raft of clouds. They passed and she came into full view, soft white lighting the clouds. I watched her as I walked to the building and then stood on the patio for several minutes, marveling at the way she seemed to sail through the sky and the clouds to be still. At last, black clouds obscured her again and I forced myself through the doors to work.

Light above and beyond the clouds, always.


barn swallow said...

Thank you for sharing this beauty with us, Dr. Impson! "Light above and beyond the clouds, always" - Thank God, for that!

Saturday evening I saw the moon rise as I drove home for a visit. As it climbed into cloud cover, its brilliance diminished, outlining arms of dark cloud and escaping in temporary bars of light. These isolated and reduced rays seemed especially profound to me. I long for clarity, order, understanding--but I think I must learn to also embrace the peculiar lessons of cloudy nights, to recognize and relish the always triumphant light's interaction with obscurity.

Beth Impson said...

Lovely, Elena! Thanks for sharing that beauty!