Friday, June 11, 2010

The Darkening

The diffused magic of the hot sweet South had withdrawn into them -- the soft-pawed night and the ghostly wash of the Mediterranean far below -- the magic left these things and melted into the two Divers and became part of them.

~F. Scott Fitzgerald, "Tender is the Night"~


It's my favorite time of day, that half hour transition after the sun has made its lazy downward descent, when buildings become stenciled with leafy silhouettes and boisterous conversations are supplanted by hushed tete-a-tetes.

Calm reigns. The overwhelming feeling is that everything on earth is exhaling at the same time.

Inside, rooms are illuminated with an ethereal glow. Get-togethers become more meaningful; with the constriction of daylight comes the sudden sense of being alone with each other in the universe.

For me, the shadows give way to reflective thoughts. They make me want to light a candle (or ten) and curl up in a good reading chair.

The darkening is license to let my thoughts take flight and lose themselves in fantastic mental murmurings, remembered dreamscapes and rococo fantasies.

What does it mean to you?

28 comments:

willow said...

Gorgeous post.

1 Funky Woman said...

Oh I so agree, it makes you want to sit and reflect on the days events! And curl up with a good book of course!

Karena said...

Lisa, fabulous images and I love dusk when everything becomes calm.

Karena
Art by Karena

columnist said...

You're so right! I treasure the transition, but I've never put these thoughts and feelings to words; thank you for doing so. We frequently have the added bonus of stunning sunsets, that once they begin to fade leave a glorious pink glow, that deepens and then darkens into black, illuminated by the twinkling city lights. Then it's time to have a cocktail, and prepare supper.

Anonymous said...

As my husband and I were heading for a bite to eat this evening I remarked, while exhaling, I love this time of day. Well, not your poetic words, but same sense of peace. Thank you.

24 Corners said...

Beautifully writted post Lisa! I don't know how you do it...just tonight I walked outside and it was that perfect time of the evening where the sky was all graduated shades of softly glowing blues with not a single cloud to be seen, and it was as if a serene little gift had been given to me. The pressures of the day had gone down with the sun...

To see you post about this lovely time of the day so eloquently...on this day...made me have to sit back in my chair for a moment!

Also, love the dreamy images...they keep calling me back to stare at them.

Have a lovely weekend,
xo J~

pve design said...

The darkening - there is something special in summer about that slow crescendo to the day, just as if someone had a giant dimmer switch. We have a small porch and I love sitting out there on summer evenings, and listening to the sounds of nature and looking at the lights my son strung, like a banner of love over me. I also love the dawn.
pve

Amber said...

What you call the darkening, my partner and I call "light-o'clock". For us its that magical glow that hits around 4pm (a bit later in summer), touching the world with a glorious soft glow.

Light-o'clock signals the downing of tools, and the preparation for togetherness. Often it elicits a call or SMS to remind the other to revel in the wonder out the window.

It's early winter here, in sub-tropical Brisbane, Australia. For now light-o'clock is celebrated with glasses of Saint Germain elderflower liqueur (superb stuff, even more glorious bottle!). We marvel as the bright blue sky turns pinkish-gold, then my favourite slate blue-grey. And the fruit bats take off en masse and signal the end of the sky dance.

A Super Dilettante said...

Oh my dear, your post took my breath away with the most beautiful pictures by Ivan Terestchenko. I especially love the first picture.

VictoriaArt said...

I feel very similar! I call this the blue hour! I love the calm and the silence, often the birds do not sing at this time!
A bit of solitude after long day is what I crave then!

Have a peaceful weekend!

Victoria

Acanthus and Acorn said...

It is a most pleasant part of the day. Time to relax with a favorite beverage, reflect and plan for the next day...until it is interrupted by that maddening question "What's for dinner?" by teenagers.

PeterAtLarge said...

Also known as "twilight," or "the gloaming." In French, "crépuscule." Such lovely words available for the lovely moment you describe so well...

Belly said...

Oh, for me too. And I love it most in the winter.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

PeterAtLarge: Yes and yes. "Gloaming" and "crepuscule" are two of the most beautiful words ever.

Anonymous said...

Or cow-dust hour; often bittersweet for that is when home calls out to you.
Rina

little augury said...

lovely as always and beautifully expressed, less European but likely as heartfelt- my newest post linked and inspired by this. pgt

My Dog-Eared Pages said...

A fantastic post. It's my favorite time of day, too. And, I also love Ivan's work! Beautifully composed. ;)

Michelle said...

My favorite time of day as well. Reminds me of "Remains of the Day" where Mr. Stevens is setting on a pier watching the lights come on in the evening, and (in the movie) Miss Kenton states that for a good many people, this is the best part of the day. I think someone else may of made this statement in the book, however. It's been years since I read the book, but I always turn to this movie whenever I see it on TV. They captured this moment of day beautifully in the movie.

holly aka golly said...

The gloaming. I love that time of day. I could live in that library!

home before dark said...

Beautifully felt and written. Here in the midwest, the sunsets are often glory-filled. Sometimes they are jewel-toned. Sometimes they are like a bowl of melting sorbets. Often there is an encore. Just when you think the sky is done, it stands there again in confident beauty flashing its last goodbye with unfiltered light. Here, unfortunately, we have the heat...and the mosquitoes, making night watching an extreme sport unless you have a screened porch!

Susan's Snippets said...

Lisa -

I am definitely a lover of the early morning. The filtered wash of colors from the rising sun, along with the hush sounds made by the awakening of all things alive!

on that i thrive

Miss Cavendish said...

Lovely. I also love a late-afternoon moment, about 4:00, driving through the countryside with Mr C, three sleepy children in tow, when I do not have to worry about dinner plans or coordinating lessons, but can sip on a latte and open my mind to creative possibilities. It doesn't happen often, but when it does, it's an Emersonian experience.

Patti Friday (Liberty Post) said...

You have transported me...what an incredible post. Your writing puts me in a trance. You're like F.Scott! Truly.

katiedid said...

Your mind illustrates perfect moments with such clarity my dear!

Here, it happens just as we are scraping the last drops of melted vanilla and strawberry juice from our dessert bowls while the frogs begin their nightly chorus from our neighbors pond. The sky has turned inky indigo and we rest, sated, from the heat of the day.

Newell Turner said...

I've come back several times to read this post. It is my favorite time of the day. Sometimes the light turns pink and mauve and vibrates. Sometimes the very last rays of sun pour across the view like honey. It's a special time. Twilight. I love that word, too.

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