For just one moment
the sky stopped time,
and we gazed upward
to where an angel
lit the clouds
like a row of pure white candles,
and the flames flickered
in many hues
and spoke to us in sweet silence,
reminding us that life is brief,
a momentary blur.
A lesson we forgot.
Note: My thanks go to my friend, Farnaz Mojab Soheili, for allowing me to use her wonderful photograph of this magnificent cloud rainbow that appeared for just a moment. As a teacher who was with a group of fourth grade students on the playground, the cloud phenomenon was pointed out to her by a student. She looked up in time to see it shift into this beautiful formation. A rainbow in the clouds is called iridescence or irisation: “When parts of clouds are thin and have similar size droplets, diffraction can make them shine with colours like a corona. In fact, the colours are essentially corona fragments. The effect is called cloud iridescence or irisation, terms derived from Iris the Greek personification of the rainbow…. Iridescence is seen mostly when part of a cloud is forming because then all the droplets have a similar history and consequently have a similar size.”
In the past five months I have been studying my much beloved tanka, haiku and small poems in order to become a better writer. Writers–and poets–need to keep growing as they go. As part of my interest in these lovely small poem forms, I have joined a number of exception online groups of poets who post their own writing. On several of the sites, “prompts” are given and sometimes a picture is given. People respond as they wish or not. Often comments are given. I can’t tell you what a thrill it is to get a “like” or even a comment by one of these poets who are so gifted and accomplished tanka and/or haiku poets, but even without the ‘likes,’ it feels wonderful to be a little more confident about sharing poems publicly. This morning, I’m posting several tanka I wrote this week to specific prompts.