Beyond the Commonplace, Week 51

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Chasing the sunset. Beginning near the famous Chisholm Trail where the headquarters of the Express Ranches resides, I meandered west, following the North Canadian River. Using Google Maps, I charted the byways of local roads hoping to capture more of the sun as it reflected off the brilliant sheen of winter glass. I was reminded of a beautiful line from Robert Frost's poem Birches: "You'd think the inner dome of heaven had fallen."

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Why do solitary trees arrest our attention? Is it the sole survivor story we see? Does it reflect our loneliness? Perhaps it is simply nature's framing: If you were to stand in a forest of trees like this one, would you appreciate this one tree's simple beauty? Driving along Cemetery Road, this lush green, sequestered giant arrested my attention. To the left, out of view, lay a series of cedar trees, equally as splendid. We do the same with each other. Profiling, categorizing, grouping ... demeaning the beauty of the individual.

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North Canadian River on Cemetery Road. "Glory, splendor; eastward flowing stream." - Li Po

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Am I seeing the sun or is the sun seeing me? Who is peeking at who? Annie Dillard in her essay An Expedition to the Pole writes, "They went ... partly in search of the sublime, and they found it the only way it can be found, here or there - around the edges, tucked into the corner of days".

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Amid the growing dark, the icy crown casts its shadow.

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About this post series: Beyond the Commonplace.