false storm

I tried to photograph the lightning–
the flash between the layers of sky—

(no thunder)

clouds streaming over the moon

how many miles distant?–
far away, too far away to hear—
a silent film that eluded my camera

so I let it go and let it shine
in bursts through the window
into and through my eyes

the color was salmon, maybe
yellow, maybe pink—a pastel
shimmering against the dark

eventually the moon disappeared
behind the false storm,
and only the city lights glowed–tiny
squares of refuge against the night

For this week’s challenge, Brendan at earthweal asks us to interrupt our usual programming with flashes and booms of this extraordinary power. Lightning falls: what are we going to make of that?

38 thoughts on “false storm

  1. The poem was beautiful and so was the painting. I especially liked –
    eventually the moon disappeared
    behind the false storm,
    and only the city lights glowed–tiny
    squares of refuge against the night

    Such a pensive, poignant ending to the poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The poem is masterful! I especially was struck (but not by lightning) by the line “a silent film that eluded my camera”. It made me think of all the storms that swirl around us – unseen and unnoticed as they happen in the hearts and minds of people so very far away (emotionally?)…

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  3. I enjoyed your use of color to describe the lightning. There was a storm here a couple of days ago. At first it was heat lightning then it turned to those electric bolts jolting the sky. Love how you included the moon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jane. It was an amazing sight.

      Light can definitely provide comfort. Commercial lights generally don’t do that though. Luckily I don’t see too many of those from my window.

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      1. The only storm we actually had this summer was one of those false storms, constant lightning and no rain, though we had the thunder too. They are so scary. I think being in the city would be a comfort when that’s going on. No fear of wildfires at least. And it provided such a great photo.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That’s true–although we are always warned to stay out of the shower! I do think most buildings have lightning rods as well.

          Last year some people were killed at a nearby beach because they refused to leave when the lifeguards told them to. There are dangers everywhere.

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  4. False storms or proper, I was in heaven reading and gazing at this. (I’ve never gotten close to photographing even this kind of lighting, so with the moon it was deluxe. And that painting totally conjures images of lightning strikes taken from space.) I’ll still always take rain and thunder, but these false storms still give us the chance to be taken out of our preoccupations by something extraordinary.

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  5. “the flash between the layers of sky…” perfect phrasing, I could see it, and as always, your art seems to be married so smoothly to your words. There are more false storms than true here as well, distant thunder passing in someone else’s sky, yet teasing with a promise that the mundane can be interrupted, the dry can be refreshed, even healed…anyway, a pleasure to read this this morning.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. We’ve had enough storms in my location to keep the grass very happy and the mower busy. But they are so beautiful and the thunder sure gets your attention. Poor dog comes running and hides under my chair. He’s sure that Mother Nature is out to get him.

    Love your poem, Kerfe, so evocative.

    Liked by 1 person

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