Flaming rainbow

Summer solstice rainbow

In the country, dust and heat on summer solstice day in Texas compress the air and stifle activity unless pickup doors close and air conditioning is set to near maximum.  Cattle bunch up under the shade of mesquite and live oak, chewing cud, panting and resting.  Highway construction workers — I see them between Mingus and Abilene — don white, flowing bandannas about their neck, issuing profiles of Bedouin upon the Arabian desert.  The workers move slowly, crumbling with drills and backhoes the old asphalt so that concrete may be laid for continental traffic.  They toil for dollars, but mostly for future mirages in far-off lands.

So dry, the forest service retorts, that in the recorded weather history of  Texas, no drier period between last October and May has occurred.  As the sun set two days ago, smoke from wildfires westward turned the sun blood-red and I thought of all the science fiction tales that speak of dying worlds, collapsing stars and barren wastes of uninhabitable planets.

But yesterday evening, thunder and lightening came through the ranchito with rain that pooled ever so briefly on the county road, setting new potholes that I will not regret.  The sky, the air turned yellow, yellowish-green, and in the east where the squall line flew, the darkest blue set the mantlepiece for a rainbow, two of them, in the sky.  How infinite the patterns of the weather for one day the sun scorches the veld and the next day reflects the colors of rainbows.  Flame and rainbow melt.  The colors drape beautifully, artfully, upon a landscape that nourishes life and hope again, an elegant form that rests against me.  Dust and heat will come again, I know.  But yesterday a rainbow colored my sky and will again.


Filed under Juniper, Wildfire

10 responses to “Flaming rainbow

  1. And right now – yes, this very minute! – I’m watching the wind rise across the water and the sky turn dark. The same system that brought you such a wonderful transformation is finally making its way across Houston, moving toward the coast. Perhaps, perhaps, this will be our day for more than a puddle.

    Both the pigeons and seagulls are playing in the updrafts as though they sense the coming of that change from flame to rainbow.

    A beautiful post, to reflect a beautiful experience.

  2. Beautiful prose and imagery, Jack!

    Crackling heat and desolation parched my being…until hope brought rain, potholes and rainbows. Thank you for painting rainbows with your words!

  3. I’m sure any rain is welcome at this point Jack. The rainbow is hopefully a sign of good things to come. Wonderful photo. Loved the pastel colors.

  4. What a wonderful experience, Jack. And a fine photo of a rainbow, it is such a rare thing to catch a rainbow! And your description is so strong that I can feel how it was to be there. Thank you for sharing this.

  5. Beautiful post, eloquent and uplifting. Many fine phrases and images you’ve included here. They gave me goosebumps more than once. Very nice, Jack.

  6. From experience, I could enjoy that summer rain with you. I deeply love summer rains anyway, but especially during a long, dry hot spell.

  7. Such beautiful, poetic prose, Jack. You are a treasure.

  8. Pingback: Chocolate to mesquite | Sage to Meadow

  9. what a fine description of the southern heat. your photo is a wonderful plus to the werds.

  10. Pingback: Clouds with Mourning Dove | Sage to Meadow

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