Saturday, December 1, 2018

The Color Blue – And All Of You!

Recently, Thanksgiving was celebrated, and although it’s not a festival “where I come from”, I think we can all benefit from pressing pause from time to time, in order to take stock and reflect upon what we can point to on the “giving thanks” side of our personal ledger.

Last year, the Skiffy and Fanty blog did this in another way by designating January as their Month of Joy. In it, they asked authors and others in the speculative fiction community to aspects of life (the universe and everything that bring them joy.)

When reflecting on Thanksgiving and looking ahead to this coming year’s Month of Joy (yes, Skiffy & Fanty are doing it again, and again I hope to take part) I thought Supernatural Undergrounders might be interested on what I had to say last year.

I haven’t posted it in full, but there’s a link to the compleat post at the end. If you do check it out, say “hi” to the Skiffy and Fanty crew why you’re over there — I’m “pretty sure” they’d love to hear from you. ;-)


“Helen Lowe’s Month Of Joy: From The Color Blue To “The End”

“These I have loved:
White plates and cups, clean-gleaming,
Ringed with blue lines; and feathery, faery dust;
Wet roofs, beneath the lamp-light; the strong crust
Of friendly bread; and many-tasting food;
Rainbows; and the blue bitter smoke of wood…”

 ~ from The Great Lover, Rupert Brooke, 1887-1915

This excerpt from Rupert Brooke’s poem,The Great Lover, captures how seemingly small things can encompass joy. I recognize many if not all of the items contained in The Great Lover—from “the cool kindliness of sheets” to “blue-massing clouds”—but of course I have a list of my own…

River, Ocean, Sky…
The color blue informs it, because I love the changeable blues of ocean, rivers, and sky, a love that spills over into the blue dart of a dragonfly and the flash of a kingfisher by a summer river. The blues of lapis lazuli, turquoise, and sapphire also beguile, just as the contrast of blue-and-white—whether white caps on the ocean, or a Hokusai print, or Cornish kitchenware—is an enduring delight.

Blue on blue; blue-and-white
I’ve begun with blue since it’s so ubiquitous because of sky and water, but quickly realized that I love all color in its many manifestations—although the predominant colors of the natural world, the blues and the greens, are probably my favorites. Nonetheless I do find it difficult to pass by any vibrant display of color, whether in nature or art, in a book on the subject, or a fabric display—not unlike Garfield encountering a patch of sunshine, although generally I remain awake. :D

A vibrant display of color
From the colors of the natural world to the natural world itself: it’s not just the blues and the greens, but the sounds of water flowing and the crash of ocean waves, a dolphin in the sea or bird cleaving the sky, the sound of bees in lavender and the spiky flowers themselves, with their dusty scent of summer.
Bumblebee on hebe
From a thunderstorm rumbling across land or ocean, to the acrid scent of earth when the first raindrops fall after a long dry spell, to dew glittering on a spider’s web, the natural world is full of a beauty that provokes delight and brings joy. I know I am not alone in feeling this, because Gerard Manley Hopkins is another poet whose work speaks to these emotions:

“Glory be to God for dappled things –
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow
For rose moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’wings”
~ Gerard Manley Hopkins, 1844 – 1889 …”

To read the post in full click on: Helen Lowe's Month Of Joy

I’ll be doing another Month of Joy post for 2019, so if you enjoyed this post, keep a lookout here on Supernatural Underground, on Skiffy and Fanty, or on my own blog, for when that goes live. 

Just by the way, though, something else that’s on the positives side of the ledger will always be “all of you” in the Supernatural Underground community: the authors, for sure, but definitely the readers and blog followers. Y’all rock: but then again, I’m sure you already know that.  J

Helen Lowe is a teller of tales and purveyor of story, chiefly by way of novels and poetry; she also blogs and occasionally interviews fellow writers. Her first novel, Thornspell (Knopf), was published to critical praise in 2008. The second,The Heir of Night (The Wall Of Night Series, Book One) won the Gemmell Morningstar Award 2012, and the sequel, The Gathering Of The Lost, was shortlisted for the Gemmell Legend Award in 2013. Daughter Of Blood (Book Three), was published in 2016 and Helen is currently writing the final novel in the series. She posts regularly on her “…on Anything, Really” blog, monthly on the Supernatural Underground, and is also on Twitter: @helenl0we.

1 comment:

Kim Falconer said...

I love these beautiful reminders and evocations. Thank you, Helen!