September 13, 2006

Oh Beautiful for Smoky Skies

Most of the time at work I keep the blinds mostly closed, because I sit right in front of a rather large window that faces west, and in the afternoon the sun reflects off the buildings and cars across the street and shines so brightly that it hurts my eyes. I also like to avoid staring out at the cemetery across the street, that has at least 50 different types of trees that are so beautiful to look at. Can't get much done while I'm staring and thinking about trees.

Just now while I was sitting here working, I noticed that the light coming from outside was really strange and yellow. I stepped outside and it felt like I was stepping into the Twilight Zone. We have had such huge fires burning in Montana the last couple weeks, and the whole atmosphere is filled with smoke. Today the smoke has apparently created a strange light refracting phenomenon that is absolutely beautiful. I am thrown into an uncontrollable desire to paint RIGHT NOW. It is so beautiful outside. I'm reminded of the surreal feeling I felt when I was 11 and visiting Alaska in the summer, and we'd go outside late at night and it was still very light outside with no sun visible. That's how it feels right now, although the Alaska experience was a distinctly blue atmosphere. Today it's so YELLOW. Golden. With no actual sunshine peeking through the haze. It's just sunlight glowing through a smoky filter. Last night the sun was a huge red orb on the horizon that you could view without sunglasses, due to the smoke.

Beautiful. Sad. Our forests in Montana are so beautiful before they burn.


Anonymous said...

Beautiful imagery SML, I can almost see the scene now and smell the smoke. As for the red orb, I am convinced JS had this vision as he knelt in the forest. But I am assured your recreation is much more accurate.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

Yes, my version is better since I didn't say I saw TWO orbs!


La said...

Hey, at least my wish of "a little excitement" came true! What great descriptions you gave.

I wish you would paint the scene.