Thursday, October 16, 2008

Meditations on clouds, etc.

So I like to begin writing with "so" because it implies a continuation, a conversation. Assuming that I'm picking up an already understood thread, I thought I'd share some of my thoughts (typed with full awareness of the repetition of thought and thoughts -- I have lots of them, they tumble so eagerly from my mind, moment to moment)

Earlier, for example, while sitting in Advanced Environmental Geography, I realized how appropriate it was that we'd spent Tuesday learning about "hydrometeors" while a cold, dreary autumn rain fell outside. But today, we were learning about clouds under a brilliant blue sky. Perhaps not quite as appropriate, but still inspiring:

  • Western New York suffers chronic stratus and nimbo-stratus skies, which should only be allowed on melancholy November days. Beyond that, they're just tiring. Arizona, alternately, experiences those breathtaking cumulonimbus monsoons, oh that just make you feel alive.
  • Cumulous clouds, meanwhile, are those deliciously white puffs that form during summer, which can be either annoying or comfortable to anyone who's trying to read outside -- either curse or appreciate the alternating sun then shadow then sun, warm cool hot cold.
  • Clouds can only be described with similies -- like cauliflower, like cottonballs; like horsetails, like anvils; like dragons, like turtles.

Moving on from clouds:

  • "Raindrop" and "snowflake" are onomatopoeic -- you can't divorce the word from the sound it makes
  • Great mystery of meteorology (let's hope it stays that way) -- no one knows exactly what makes a raindrop form.
  • Evaporation fog forms when cool air settles in over warm moist ground or a warm body of water. That's what defines the term, but the condition is less a weather phenomenon and more an ingredient for a poem.

So that's what I've been thinking today. Random snippets, flows. While browsing desperately for something to read Saturday, I found the Robert Frost shelves in the library, flipped through his published notebooks, found them filled with delicious half-references, scribbled thoughts. I'll never pretend to even begin to equate my observations with those of Robert Frost (in fact, needed several infinitive verbs to separate myself), but figure he's not a bad thinker to admire.

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