Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Sunset Alchemy

Softly the evening came. The sun from the western horizon
Like a magician extended his golden want o'er the landscape;
Trinkling vapors arose; and sky and water and forest
Seemed all on fire at the touch, and melted and mingled together.
(Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Evangeline)

There was a moment this evening, just before sunset when day and night seem to hold their breath, as if making a silent, solemn vow to one another, when Duncan pulled me down the side of the hill toward the lake. The willows and long grass along the shore stood at attention, saluting the golden light, every tip reflecting and magnifying it, taking what was given and somehow making more of it, turning everything into gold, a kind of sunset alchemy. Duncan, always eager and sometimes more so, led me through the field of reeds, shimmering bulbs and whispering grass to a pair of small wild sunflowers which grew no taller than his face. I marveled at the light dancing around me reflected from all directions, but especially from the water and the flowers, dappling my skin and dazzling my eyes. I could not believe I'd stumbled upon and become a part of such a perfect moment. And then I turned to Roo, standing as he was near those bright yellow petals. He smiled at me and as he raised his head his eyes were obscured by the sunflowers, which replaced and become them, brilliant and wide, unblinking and magnificent. It lasted only a moment before the ducks paddling nearby caught his attention, raising his ears as they passed. It was a moment I will always remember, my boy one with the field and the sunset and all the world rising up to meet the light shining around him.

"The setting sun, and music at the close,
As the last taste of sweets, is sweetest last,
Writ in remembrance more than things long past."

(William Shakespeare)


caboval said...

I love how Duncan shows you the world around you :)

Lori said...

Beautiful photos.

I went on a four-mile run tonight as the sun set. I pretended the painting in the sky was just for me. And I pitied the people zooming by in their cars, oblivious to the everyday miracle of pink and purple brushstrokes in the sky.