Sunday, October 24, 2010

Day 24: Dawn-beams

Peters Hill, Arnold Arboretum, Jamaica Plain, MA, 6:45am-8:15am
cool, diverse mix of clouds

Another spectacular sunrise this morning, thanks to a motley assortment of clouds. We've got corrugated cardboard-clouds up high, a few slinky, gold-lined puffs just below, and a brief, brilliant, oval sun rising between two cloud banks on the horizon.

At one point, just as the sun disappears behind some puffy clouds, huge, dusty beams of rose light emerge, extending horizontally, parallel to the earth, towards me and beyond.

I've never seen anything like it: descending beams of light, yes, like the oft-painted rays of heaven coming down from clouds. But light that reaches out horizontally is quite a different sight. Yet another face of heaven...

The sun has moved much further south on the horizon, at least 1.5 handwidths, in the last 11 days (since Dawn Chorus, Day 13), and I discover a new place from which to get a good view of this part of the horizon. It's fun to be compelled to discover new sunrise-watching spots.

Today's Bird of the Day is again a Downy Woodpecker (female). This was the closest I've been to one - she was maybe 5 feet away. No calls, just pecking rhythms:

When she flew off, she joined several other woodpeckers at the same tree. It was really fun to hear multiple tappity-tap rhythms coming from a couple neighboring trees. Can you hear them here? There are at least three different woodpeckers on this cut:

At home, I sketched a piece based on the dusty beams of horizontal dawn. It's written for two of me (IE, there are two recorded layers here):


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