Thursday, 8 November 2007

Red Sky at Morning

I should have never let myself get involved in searching through the drawer that has poems, "prosems" and diaries from years past. I think it all started because of the night I tried remembering a few fragments of the poem that begins "There's not a word I've ever written...". Not being able to remember the whole thing caused me to go searching for it. I still haven't found it, but, goodness, have I found a lot of other junk!

This first picture is a painting of mine from the 60's called "California Dreamin'" It is a scene near Malibu and I am looking out from a shallow cave. The reason I chose this painting is because it shows a sunrise with some reddish clouds. This relates to the poem I came across and wanted to share with you. The poem is untitled and was written in 1994 while visiting my sister, Betty and her husband, B.K. in Florida at American Thanksgiving.

Red sky,
"Red sky at morning,
sailors take warning..."

I step outside and look up at the sky
half night, half morning
The wind blows off the lake
sweet and cold
Red birds are already up and talking
"Coo-E, coo-E"
Florida deer stand small and fairy-like
at the edge of the woods
Moon and planets still shine brightly
"oh, look, a shooting star!"

I marvel in my ability to feel joy...
dare I say it?
To rejoice in being alive!

How quickly the moment passes
Suddenly I can feel
the cold wind blowing through my robe
I hurry inside
to warmth and
the mundane.

This poem has a funny story attached. A few hours later, after jotting it down at the dining room table, my sister, Betty, finally got up. I was standing in the dining room looking out towards the lake. Betty noticed my writing on a piece of paper so she picked it up and begin to read. When she got to the end, she shouted, "mundane" -- "you think you can get away with describing a visit with your big sister as mundane?!" At which point she begin to chase me around the dining table while I shouted out "poetic licence, I've got poetic licence"! By now we were both laughing and shouting at each other and her husband, B.K., walked in with a load of wood for the fireplace. He stood and looked at us for a moment and then just shook his head and said: "I leave you two alone for just a few minutes and this is what I come back to!" They are both gone now and, oh, how I miss them.

So following the theme of "red sky at morning", I thought I would show you a few photos from my files.

This first one is called "Canoeing at Sunrise" and I kept it because it looks very appealing to me. I doubt that the sailors' rhyme applies to inland waterways, but this gives me a good excuse to show it to you.

This next drawing is one you have seen before. Matter of fact, I think it was in the very first posting I ever did. Anyway, it is entitled "Two Solitudes" and is of the B.C. coastline. If it looks familiar to you, it may be because the photograph I worked from is frequently used in the tourist literature for B.C. And while the sky is a bit reddish purple, this is not an uncommon colour for the sky at both morning, evening and mid-day along coastal B.C. At any rate, the drawing still gives me a lot of pleasure.

This photograph is called "Red Sky at Sunrise" and I think that is a pretty impressive sky. Truly, Nature is the absolutely best artist of us all.
I have no idea where this photo was taken although the trees make it look a bit like Canada. If the location was anywhere near open water and I saw a sunrise like that, I think I would keep my fishing boat home for the day!

This next drawing of mine is one I have also shown you previously. It was part of my "Lighthouse/Windmill Exhibition". I called this one "Eastern Stones" just so
I wouldn't have to call it Peggy's Cove!
This is another red sky at morning, but then you often see these red sky mornings in cold weather down east -- so I am not sure if the rhyme works for them or not!

This last photograph for the evening is also from B.C. It is a picture of early morning on Canim Lake. What a great spot that would be for starting your day. I would imagine that the air tastes sweet and clean. The only sounds might be the lapping water and bird calls.

Finally, I will show you the only drawing I have of the rest of the "red sky" verse. I have also shown you this one before. It is entitled "Sailors' Delight" and as I mentioned at the time, this comes from the final two lines of the rhyme -- which, in its entirety, goes:
Red sky at morning
Sailors take warning
Red sky at night
Sailors' delight.
Wishing you a peaceful night.

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