(This is a repost, with a slight correction to the poem, as I realized a grammatical mistake. I have fixed the text, but I will leave the audio as is. I wonder if you can hear the mistake?)
What is it about sunrises and sunsets that keeps us so captivated?
That was the quesiton I asked myself after seeing a picture of another one on Instagram. And thus began my observations and research. (Am starting to think that perhaps using this little sonnet ambition of mine may be a good way to introduce my students to a PBL this year.)
It started with my desire to observe. I think I went out one morning early enough to watch the sunrise. But it wasn’t enough. I needed more. And so, a couple weeks ago, when I got off work, I bribed three of my children to go with me to climb Stone Mountain. I also texted our new friends, who just moved in down the street about two months ago, to see if they would meet us over there. Mom-of-two-boys, who used to run marathons before thyroid cancer, accepted my invitation.
When we got to the top of Stone Mountain, I wasn’t really given much of a chance to observe and think – kids and new friend needed attention. But, I did take some pretty interesting pictures and so it wasn’t an altogether useless trip for my poetic purposes, and it certainly wasn’t useless toward the quality-time-with-people purposes.
On Saturday last-last week, I finally had a moment to do a Google search on sunrises and sunsets and what makes them so colorful (because I figured that’s just it… that’s why they keep us captivated.) I found a video that explained the scientific reason wonderfully. It basically has to do with the amount of atmosphere the sun’s light has to travel through, and when you throw clouds in there and other interesting elements, that makes the sunrise or sunset all the more interesting.
Anyhow, I really wanted to finish writing this latest sonnet last week, but due to teacher planning and school being back in session, I did not have the energy and attention to get it done. But my mind has been on it and so I knew I’d get it done eventually and it’s okay if it takes time. Slow writing may be the best kind of writing anyway. (That’s why my writing is the best. 😅)
I finally finished this yesterday. The driving thought behind this sonnet is that in order to have beauty in life, one has to clash with hardships. One cannot sit around and live a safe life behind doors if one wants to live a beautiful life.
In order for there to be a beautiful sunrise/set, the light has to pass through particles and elements in the atmosphere. And our salvation also – our encounter with God – is beautiful because God’s light and goodness shines on our sin and life circumstances and turns us around, turns things around, for our good and for His glory.
Clouds in the sky’s horizon set the stage. The lead player rises up, beams glory. Audience held captive, eyes in a gaze at colors born only through the fury. The best shows are the ones partly cloudy when light wrestles particles and prevails in yellow, orange, and pink that blends in sky and spreads violet feathers, like peacock tails. Without conflict, beauty of plotline fails and life lived inside watching screens is safe but shows us the sedentary life pales compared to one not trying to save face. So rise, with clouds, offer your horizon to the dawn, noonday heat, and setting sun.
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