On Exploring an Uncontrollable Dance

Nature is so powerful, so strong. Capturing its essence is not easy – your work becomes a dance with light and the weather. It takes you to a place within yourself. (Annie Leibovitz, photographer)

For night’s swift dragons cut the clouds full fast,
And yonder shines Aurora’s harbinger;
At whose approach ghosts, wandering here and there,
Troop home to churchyards. (William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream)

The sight filled the northern sky; the immensity of it was scarcely conceivable. As if from Heaven itself, great curtains of delicate light hung and trembled. Pale green and rose-pink, and as transparent as the most fragile fabric, and at the bottom edge a profound fiery crimson like the fires of Hell, they swung and shimmered loosely with more grace than the most skillful dancer. (Philip Pullman, The Golden Compass)

The north! the north! from out the north
What founts of light are breaking forth,
And streaming up these evening skies,
A glorious wonder to our eyes!
(Hannah Flagg Gould, The Aurora Borealis)

When I look at the northern lights … I see our ancestors dancing around a sacred fire, lighting the way for us when it’s time for us to cross over from this physical world and join them. (Molly Larkin, What do the Northern Lights mean for us?)

55 thoughts on “On Exploring an Uncontrollable Dance

    • Pauline,
      I’m probably like many in the northern hemisphere who have never given the southern lights a thought … duh!!! … but it makes sense. πŸ™‚ Have you seen them at your home?


  1. Have you see the lights before? I have, twice. Both times while drunk, once near Toronto (true story) and once in Fort McMurray near the oil sands. The only way to absorb the oil sands is to be drunk; but the one time up there, the sky went all nuts. It didn’t really look like what’s in this awesome video but it felt entirely huge. No other way to describe. Like the sky was completely alive.


  2. I’ve only seen the Northern Lights once in my life, interestingly, I was driving to a peace conference; of course I stopped the car and pulled over to the side of the road to watch this spectacular event.


  3. I think of all the phenomena that I can think of, the Northern Lights hold the most fascination to me. I don’t know that I have any travel plans that will ever bring me even close, but it would be wonderful. I really enjoyed the video, Frank. Very special.


  4. There was a special on PBS about cities that I was checking out just this morning. It talked about nature and our never ending need to control it. When really, it’s not something to be controlled. Never happen.


  5. Watching the Northern Lights dance across the sky in this video… sigh… so beautiful.
    On a funny note, I used to watch Northern Exposure and in one episode, during the time of the year the lights are most visible, the inhabitants of the village (for the fans out there, it is never quite known exactly where this takes place) start having each others’ dreams…
    Yet another one for my “To-Do/To-See List!)
    And… good morning, Frank!


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