Again this morning, I was up and moving well before sunrise. In fact, I was at the computer, watching for lightening skies through the window blinds when I was summoned. “You have to see this!” my newly risen partner called. And when I followed the call, what beauty filled the skies.
It was a pink and golden dawn. I found the camera and took photos of the trees silhouetted against the sunrise skies towards the east. But then, looking around a bit more, was thrilled to find we had a 360 degree panorama sunrise this morning.
The sky was beautiful towards the north and west as well, where the waning moon was nestled in the branches of a tree. Finally, I had found the moon.
Our shortest day of the year is tomorrow, with the sun not rising until nearly 7:30 in the morning, and setting before 5 PM. The moon won’t even appear until after 8 PM. The tea time hours darken so quickly this time of year, with night descending over the landscape with firm finality.
I was on the road yesterday, racing to be at home before darkness had settled on our rush hour streets. I was delayed leaving by only a few minutes, but still drove the last 20 miles in ever deepening twilight, straining against the glare of headlights to weave through traffic and find the way home. My reward was the beauty of Christmas lights in front yards along the way.
As we approach this longest night, every minute of daylight seems that much more precious; and every brightly wrapped tree and lit window more appreciated. It is a good time to gather with loved ones to celebrate the many joys and blessings of the year.
This solstice time is full of beauty and promise. As surely as the sun and moon follow their tracks through the sky, so our days will lighten and lengthen yet again. The buds will swell, seeds will sprout, and the new year will unfold.
“I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape, the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter.
Something waits beneath it; the whole story doesn’t show.”
All Photos by Woodland Gnome 2013
PaintThe Sky (Forest Garden)