Sunday, January 28, 2018

Frost from Fire

As different as a moonbeam from lightning, or frost from fire.
~ Emily Bronte

It has been a cold, frosty winter for the most part. One downside is that it's been too cold to wander about comfortably with camera in hand. Another is that my apartment windows are so heavily covered in frost, that I have a hard time seeing outside of them. The upside however, is that it makes for some interesting macro photography. Frosty windows with minimal tweaking are below.

frost with morning sun
Winter is a glorious spectacle of glittering fractals complete with a soundscape and atmosphere entirely its own. ~ Anders Swanson
The sun sent its first light over the horizon and sprinkled her golden glitter on my window pane.

frost with morning sun2
It is the life of the crystal, the architect of the flake, the fire of the frost, the soul of the sunbeam. This crisp winter air is full of it. 
~ John Burroughs
Just when I thought it couldn't sparkle any brighter.. it did.

frost at sunrise4
What miracle of weird transforming
Is this wild work of frost and light,
This glimpse of glory infinite?
~ John Greenleaf Whittier
The day began to take on peachy hues.

frost at sunrise
How beautiful thy frosty morn,
When brilliants gem each feathery thorn!
~ Bernard Barton
Peach blended with pink and mauve light turned icy panes into a bejeweled mountainous landscape.

frost at sunrise2
What a severe yet master artist old Winter is. No longer the canvas and the pigments, but the marble and the chisel.
~ John Burroughs
As the day grew lighter, so did the colours reflected in the glass.

frost at sunrise3
The frost performs its secret ministry,
Unhelped by any wind.
~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge
I just kept seeing little worlds within this tiny frozen space.

In winter we behold the charms of solemn majesty and naked grandeur.
~ James Ellis
I love how depending on the time of day and the colour of the sky, various shades appear to soften the icy etchings.

Nothing burns like the cold.
~ George R.R. Martin
Silvery blue crystals with aqua hues in the sky beyond.

A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water.
~ Carl Reiner
Some of these photos are from last spring like this one taken in March of 2017.

I watch the springs, the summers, the autumns;
And when comes the winter snow monotonous,
I shut all the doors and shutters
To build in the night my fairy palace.
~ Charles Baudelaire
As was this frosty feather.

Winter is nature's way of saying, "Up yours.
~ Robert Byrne
Also from last year, I turned up the contrast and vibrance on this and the next image, and found that these sparse bits of frost looked like unusual bugs crawling around on the glass.

Melancholy were the sounds on a winter's night.
~ Virginia Woolf
This pattern should come with its own sound effects.

Winter came down to our home one night
Quietly pirouetting in on silvery-toed slippers of snow,
And we, we were children once again.
~ Bill Morgan, Jr.
A nighttime shot with enough light from behind to silver-paint the window.

It is said that in a certain faraway land the cold is so intense that words freeze as soon as they are uttered, and after some time thaw and become audible, so that words spoken in winter go unheard until the next summer. ~ Author Unknown
Layer upon layer of sparkling frost, and what appears to be a silver leaf a little left of center. I might not be able to see out my windows but they do entertain me.

frost at night
The gaunt limbs, and stark, rigid, death-like whiteness of winter.
~ Bret Harte
And later in the night, city street lights help illuminate the window's canvas so that Jack Frost can do his work.

NYE near-full moon3
There is a grandeur in winter, stern and wild it may be, but a grandeur which speaks to the soul.
~ C. J. Peterson
On New Year's Eve, the moon was nearly full - and it rose early. You might have to pull back a bit to see the curve of that lovely orb in the background.

NYE near-full moon2
The winter frowned its icy eyebrows
~ Florenin Smarandache
Or I could just give you a more distant perspective instead.

NYE near-full moon1
I hide myself in the quiet white of Winter and
nestle in her comforting folds of cold oblivion.
~ Terri Guillemets
And here we are further still - the near-full moon smiling contentedly at Jack Frost's work.

Wolf Moon New Years Day
Moonlight drowns out all but the brightest stars.
~ J.R.R. Tolkien
And on New Years Day, the full Wolf Moon appeared bright and beautiful in the eastern sky.

New Years Day wolf moon
Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.
~ Anton Chekhov
A bit late in the wishing but Happy New Year, everyone.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

An Eightfold Spendor

Kindle the taper like the steadfast star ablaze on evening's forehead o'er the earth, and add each night a luster till afar an eightfold splendor shine above thy hearth. ~ Emma Lazarus

We're quickly hurtling toward Christmas but Hanukkah has come and gone. I get a kick out of staging some photos of each of the eight nights that the menorah is lit. Those images are below.

Hanukkah night one
On Hanukkah, the first dark night, light yourself a candle bright.
I'll you, if you will me invite, to dance within that gentle light.
~ Nicholas Gordon
Night Number One: A last minute purchase of a few cheap candle holders from the dollar store to act as a glittery turquoise backdrop for the first candle.

Hanukkah night two
A candle is a small thing. But one candle can light another.
And see how its own light increases, as a candle gives its flame to the other.
You are such a light. ~ Moshe Davis
Night Number Two: My Hanukkah candles match the ivory tones of a candle-lit lamp and a picture frame featuring my much-missed Skittles.

Hanukkah night three
The darkness of the whole world cannot swallow the glowing of a candle. ~ Robert Altinger
Night Number Three: An odd little collection of items - a bedazzled little gecko, a tiny jar with a collection of feathers and a gold-dipped rose from a love long ago.

Hanukkah night four
Why Hanukkah is better than Christmas: It's much quicker to clean the wax from your menorah than it is to vacuum all the pine needles. No reindeer poop to shovel from your roof. And nobody will send you a video of dogs barking "The Dreidel Song."
Night Number Four: Anyone for a cup of tea? Here's a cup just for you and some sugar if you wish. All three pieces are second hand finds.

Hanukkah night five copy
In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it "Christmas" and went to church; the Jews called it "Hanukkah" and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say "Merry Christmas!" or "Happy Hanukkah!" or to the atheists "Look out for the wall!" ~ Dave Barry
Night Number Five: Settle in for a night of reading and munching on mandarin oranges.
(I cheated a bit here. For those of you who don't follow me on Facebook where I have already confessed, see if you can figure out what the cheat is.. and maybe why)

Hanukkah night six
My family wasn't very religious; on Hanukkah, they had a menorah on a dimmer ~ Richard Lewis
Night Number Six: Remembering my Mom on this night. The figurine and vase were hers. Each take up their own place of honour at my home. The humour in some of these quotes is a nod to my Dad. Eye rolls are most appropriate.

Hanukkah night seven
Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened.
Happiness never decreases by being shared. ~ Buddha
Night Number Seven: More yard sale and thrift shop finds. A bowl with a fat candle, a lantern with tea light and an alarm clock - just because.

Hanukkah night eight
May the lights of Hanukkah usher in a better world for all humankind. ~ Unknown
Night Number Eight: On the last night, a little bit of whimsy. A candle-lit Kokopelli mirrors its smaller self on the turquoise clay tealight holder. Watching them play, is a wood sea turtle with shell that allows you to hide small treasures beneath it. The latter two are from yard sales but the larger Kokopelli was a gift.

Tree decorating with cats: O Christmas tree, O christmas tree, your Ornaments are history!
 ~ Unknown
And this little tree provides the mini lights you see behind the menorah in most of the above photos.

For those who celebrate, I wish you a belated Happy Hanukkah, a Merry Christmas, a Happy Solstice and a very Happy New Year. Thanks for sharing the seasons (at least in part) with me.