On a Beach Walk: No. 41 (Storms)

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I like walking the beach. It’s good for the mind, body, and soul – and refreshing on my feet.

In advance of a storm front due to pass in mid-afternoon, many clouds dominate the sky. They are not a solid mass, but an irregular one showing a seemingly unlimited spectrum of gray. The clouds nearly saturate the sky as ritual smoke as they move to their own cosmic dance.

Scant patches of blue periodically appear as holes leading to a greater beyond. Sometimes, an opening aligns with the sun to shine light on me. Other times the sun transforms a puffy cloud into a brilliant white aerial statue.

The wind is a little stronger today at it assists me in my eastward walk – but I know it will provide resistance on my return trip.

The winds travel across the water’s surface creating ripples for as far as I can see. I look at the thick clouds above whose lower surfaces appear as ripples caused by the same wind. There must be a connection.

The sea is more agitated than normal – unlike their more placid nature of yesterday. The red flag warms visitors of riptide currents, yet the sea is far from the fury whose tempest took ships to their unexpected but permanent mooring on the ocean floor.

The storm is not yet here – and may or may not live up to forecasted expectations. The clouds serve as a blanket of anticipation – but not a positive one because they display a haunting gloom of the approaching afternoon worry.

Storms make people anxious – just as the difficulties, trials, and tribulations do in life. Personal storms tend to weaken fragile foundations, but those with a strong cornerstone survive and come forth with strength and wisdom.

I think of storms as metaphors because storms are like problems, scrutiny, anger, life changing events, trials, and tribulations. We are aware of the political storms of controversy and ideological differences, but brainstorming seldom solves these problems.

Fortunately, information does not imply that the current and approaching weather conditions are aligning to be the perfect storm – but I wonder about not only its turmoil, but the calm on the other side – even the possibility of a rainbow, then the sunshine to follow.

For now, I don’t worry. I enjoy this time because walking the beach is good for the mind, body, and soul – and refreshing on my feet.

Sky: The Musical – Act 3: Clouds

The Story
The sky towers above – seemingly endless, but is it.

The sky is a place for imagination – imagine the swift flight of a local bird – imagining the float of a butterfly – imagining the soar like an eagle – imagining being on a plane to an exotic land

The sky is a place for dreams – of course, the dreams to fly – but also the dreams to go beyond – dreams of a future love we don’t yet know – dreams of the love we have – dreams of a love that remains for someone who is gone.

The sky – a place for contemplation – wondering about what to do – wondering what will be – wondering what has been.

The sky as a metaphor – a smoke – whether haunting or hopeful – a sign of brightness and darkness – for calm and storm – a blanket – infinity.

The sky is a place for everyday things – a place that never seems the same – the place that is the steadiness of the sun, the moon, the clouds, and the stars.

Welcome to Sky: The Musical.

PlaybillSkyProgram
Act 1: Sky
Act 2: Sun

Act 3: Clouds

Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud. (Maya Angelou, poet)

Happiness is like a cloud, if you stare at it long enough, it evaporates. (Sarah McLachlan, musician)

Nature is a mutable cloud which is always and never the same. (Ralph Waldo Emerson,author)

Above the cloud with its shadow is the star with its light. Above all things reverence thyself. (Pythagoras, mathematician)

The writer is a mysterious figure, wandering lonely as a cloud, fired by inspiration, or perhaps a cocktail or two. (Sara Sheridan, writer)

If you learned how to make a cloud, your time is not wasted. (Bob Ross, artist)

In Hong Kong, ‘wonton’ means swallowing a cloud. (Jose Andres Puerta, chef)

Guidelines

  • Songs with Cloud, Clouds, or Cloudy must be in the title
  • Caution: No songs using Cloud as a compound word (cloudburst, cloudscapes, etc)
  • No duplicates songs regardless of artists

Production Note
To prevent browsers crashing from loading too many videos, please 1) include the song title and artist in your text, and 2) paste the URL as part of your last line (not a new line). The latter will provide a link, thus not embed the actual video … but I don’t mind unembedding, so apologies are not necessary.

Announcement
Besides being worth 8 Scrabble points, cloud is noun, a verb, and even an adjective – but also (as the quotes show) a significant metaphor. Ladies and gentlemen. David, Melvin, Paul, Otis and Eddie came all the way from Motown to be with us tonight. Let’s give a rousing welcome for Rock and Roll Hall of Famers – The Temptations with their 1969 hit – Cloud Nine.

On Exploring Clouds and Skies

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The sky is the daily bread for the eyes. (Ralph Waldo Emerson, Poet)

I’m an introvert… I love being by myself, love being outdoors, love taking a long walk with my dogs and looking at the trees, flowers, the sky. (Audrey Hepburn, Actor)

The bluebird carries the sky on his back. (Henry David Thoreau, Author)

Gray skies are just clouds passing over. (Duke Ellington, Musician)

The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web. (Pablo Picasso, Artist)

Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility. (St. Augustine, Theologian)

The way of fortune is like the Milky Way in the sky; which is a number of small stars, not seen asunder, but giving light together: so it is a number of little and scarce discerned virtues, or rather faculties and customs, that make men fortunate. (Francis Bacon, Philosopher)

Once a month the sky falls on my head, I come to and I see another movie I want to make. (Stephen Spielberg, Movie Director)

Clouds do not really look like camels or sailing ships or castles in the sky. They are simply a natural process at work. So too, perhaps, are our lives. (Roger Ebert, Movie Critic)

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky. (Rabindranath Tagore, Poet)

Before we invented civilization our ancestors lived mainly in the open out under the sky. Before we devised artificial lights and atmospheric pollution and modern forms of nocturnal entertainment we watched the stars. There were practical calendar reasons of course but there was more to it than that. Even today the most jaded city dweller can be unexpectedly moved upon encountering a clear night sky studded with thousands of twinkling stars. When it happens to me after all these years it still takes my breath away. (Carl Sagan, Astronomer)

Do any of these quotes about skies and clouds impact you? Do you have other quotes about skies and clouds that are special to you? Enjoy this spectacular video from National Geographic featuring California skies.