23 January 2008

Winter Sparkle

One of my favorite aspects of the winter season is the magic of still, quiet cold nights when most people are asleep and the sky is clear and the ground is covered in frost. The sparkle of the stars are seemingly reflected in the sparkle of ice on the grass. The firey, nuclear stars that seem so small from the Earth's surface, full of gases and chemical reactions are the cousin of the tiny ice crystals that sparkle just as brightly. A walk through a frost covered yard in the full moonlight is like walking through space; every move, every shift in perception creates different constellations and nebulae. Every blade of grass, so brown and dull during the daylight wintertime hours, is bright and beautiful during the night and taking just one single step reveals ever more ice crystals and beautiful shapes and shadows.

The glisten and shine of each tiny bit of ice seems to mirror the tiny specks of light in the clear, winter night sky. It's fitting, perhaps, that this particular form of wintertime beauty is scarcely seen or appreciated as the low temperatures required are hard to tolerate. I step out, bundled up of course, and even though the wind is still the cold creeps through clothing and can quickly chill the bone just as the ice freezes the grass in place. Crunch, crunch goes the sparkle beneath my feet and my eyes can't decide whether to rest upon the moon, the stars in the sky or the stars on the ground. I tried to photograph this amazing phenomenon but was unsuccessful with my basic digital camera. I was also unsuccessful at finding a nighttime image of frost taken by someone else. Is it impossible to photograph? I hope not, but even if it is possible to capture on film I urge you, dear reader, to take a midnight stroll under the moonlight after a heavy frost and enjoy the starlight rising from underfoot.


CarolynLBoyd said...

One of the joys of this winter has been the frost that has sometimes formed on my windows -- the patterns and rainbow colors have been just amazing -- so delicate and intricate and so ephemeral, in an hour they are gone. I hadn't thought about the frost outside, too -- thank you for reminding me to go look for it!

Livia Indica said...

Ooh, yeah, I forgot about window frost. It IS gorgeous! Thanks for commenting.