Thursday, July 2, 2009


Fireworks

This is the week I think of the owls, for this is the week when the fireworks come.
On a night very soon, on the heels of a faintly heard march by Sousa, the black sky shall split under salvos of colour, the heavens recast as bomb shattered stained glass. Umbrellas of red, blue and green, opening and closing, then opening again, each jewel tone joined by concussions of sound that tromp through the woodlands like the footfalls of giants.
I have always wondered. What must the owls think? Those silent night gliders with their secretive lives, who normally have the darkness all to themselves. Do they lose their way with reliable Orion now obliterated by this strange detonation of rainbows? Do their orange eyes widen in fear of this technicolour end of the world?
Or perhaps, given their wisdom, do they have this night circled on their woody kitchen calendars, to remind themselves that this is the way the people below express their patriotism every Fourth of July?


"
The day will be the most memorable in America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival...it ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade...bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other, from this day forward, forevermore."

John Adams, in a letter to his wife, Abigail,
after the Continental Congress decided to proclaim the American colonies
independent from Britain.

Painting above: Fireworks, by James Lynch

32 comments:

  1. Pamela - you write so well. I must say that I have never thought of the owls on firework nights - but I shall now. Having just recently been to Lexington and Concord and Philadelphia then the fourth of July does have more meaning for me this year. Enjoy the fireworks.

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  2. Oh, how very lovely, both the black sky with salvos of colour, and the woody kitchens... ah *sigh*! I love owls, and infact they were a totem of sorts of my dear Mother. My Daughter has taken up any slack I may have left in her love of them since her infanthood (along with lions and frogs). We were recently thinking of just that, how do they view our strange goings on... in remembering the owl that flew overhead during out neighborhood "drive-in" movie night. I was glad to see him (or her) as I'd not heard any hoots since early early spring. Incidentally, we are currently reading HOOT out loud, a story about burrowing owls! (We saw the film a few years back...)

    May I ask about your Edward? He is so very handsome! His best friend is the spitting image of my childhood dog, a Puli, and quite a loving and dignified fellow he was.

    Such an engaging quote/prognostication from Adams. Love your beautiful blog...

    Circe

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  3. A bomb shattered stained glass -I like that expression for fire works. Yes, I will see them on the 4th!

    do you know that Joan (South African Photographs) has one of her posts about owls? Also, one where she takes takes care of a sick baby owl!

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  4. I love the fireworks! My favorites are the ones that make a boom deep in my chest. I love the noise, I love the lights, I love the pomp and circumstance. But never before have I thought of the owls. Great post!

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  5. Happy July 4th
    As a Brit turned American I celebrate everything.
    Hope the fireworks don't upset the dogs!
    Greetings from Buster!

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  6. What a fun image – both the painting and the owl perspective! I hope the clouds clear for our 4th. All the best to you and Edward.

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  7. Great post...I watched that tv series 'John Adams' over the winter and found it mesmerising and incredibly well acted..great quote!! Hope you have a happy 4th July..we save our fireworks for the 5th November over this side of the pond...but I can see why you are celebrating getting rid if the Brits..historically we have been a pretty pushy lot!!

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  8. What a beautiful quote and a nicely written post! Happy holiday to you! We'll probably have some child sized fireworks in our driveway and scare everything away!

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  9. Amazing how it is all on people's minds days before it occurs.

    I heard an amusing commentater mention "...this is the day America celebrates, well, it's break up with us. We were dumped"

    I found that original and very amusing. I wish we had fireworks in Summer. Enjoy your weekend.

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  10. i do like july 4th.
    i have several happy memories of this fun day.

    kisses to edward

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  11. After one night of fireworks at Edinburgh Castle, we found a poor dead bunny just on Castle Hill... I don't know what the owls will think....

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  12. What a beautiful painting. And how nice of you to think about the owls. I will be thinking about my dog and how to help him not die of heart failure!

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  13. an interesting thought, the owls - since I am a country dweller, we have owls, and there is nothing more spectacular then seeing one fly at night - they appear white - just a few weeks ago I came home late and pulled into our little road and there sat an owl right in the middle of the road - it was not perturbed at all that the headlights had caught it - it just sat there, then slowly turned its head toward me, looked for a moment, then flew off into the woods - wonderful - have a fabulous 4th of July celebration Pamela :)

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  14. Fireworks are exactly like umbrellas opening and closing, how very clever of you!

    I hope Edward and Apple do not mind the fireworks too much. Ted is a quivery wreck and has to sit next to me on the sofa.

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  15. I love fire works ...its beautiful but also dangerous! I always stay inside...lets invite all the owls in this year...imagine a livingroom with owls on the sofa...
    And what about Edward...our Noa(from the garden) hides her pretty head under a blancket..

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  16. This is a delightful essay. Thank you.

    I do not believe I shall see fireworks again without thinking of the owls.

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  17. Fascinating. What do those owls think?
    Have a wonderful fourth!

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  18. Pamela, you amaze me! I never thought about what the Owls must think. What must they think? You have me pondering it now! I just hope the fireworks cause enough combustion to get it raining!

    Xoxo

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  19. What a wonderful thought, I have never given much thought to those wonderous night creatures, surely they are tucked in and can telescope a watchful eye for the night's sky show!
    L

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  20. I love the image of owls having woody kitchen calendars - and how wonderful to see the likeness of the fireworks to umbrellas opening and closing - you have such imagination - have a great 4th July:)

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  21. Another thought provoking post Pamela. It seems hard to believe these days that Britain once held sway in America. The owls have my sympathy though. Your fourth of July is similar in a way to our Guy Fawkes night with all its attendant bonfires and fireworks. Our cats are petrified.

    I read My Family And Other Animals several times in childhood and loved it. I always sympathised with Margot and her acne..ha ha.

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  22. Hello P&E,

    That was a lot of trouble to go to, way back then, just to be able to watch a few fireworks!! :0)

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  23. Not just owls, but all of the birds and animals! Poor things.

    Your description was splendid; I could really visualize it. Just as well, as there will be no fireworks in Berkshire that night!

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  24. Pamela, I can't say I've ever considered what owls would think of the celebrations on the 4th, but I love what you pondered! What a perfect description of fireworks as well, and I loved the quote from John Adams. Enjoy your holiday weekend! xo

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  25. I often wonder what the monkeys think. The dogs certainly hate it and I imagine the owls would too. Beautifully written post again Pamela.

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  26. You are magic...just magic.

    You are so right- I've never thought of the owls until now.

    I do know what my poor dog Friday does- she shakes and lays at my feet. Very bad night for my girl friday.
    Have a wonderful weekend ♥

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  27. You are delightful. "...or do they have this night circled on their woody kitchen calendars to remind themselves...".Your concepts are quaint, funny, and just plain beautiful.I enjoy how you describe the quaint aspects of Edward also.It is a lovely place to visit here Pamela. Thank-you.

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  28. OOh that gave me chills. I love the quote from John Adams and also your thoughts on the owls. I bet we'll all be thinking of them when we see the beautiful bursts above tomorrow!

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  29. Really, all of the images and things that you find are spot on. Please wish Edward a happy 4th full of pomp and parade!
    pve

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  30. Happy 4th!!!!! So glad we had such wonderful Founding Fathers.

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  31. Happy 4th of July. I'll be looking at the sky. Enjoy.

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  32. I was sure I left a comment yesterday but I don't see it. So if this is a repeat, please forgive. I found your blog through Melrose Musings and Derrick. I'm enjoying it a lot. I have a blog also if you'd care to stop by.

    Thank you sharing your thoughts and ideas and photos in your blog. It is beautifully done.

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I love to read your comments! Each and every one!