Full many a glorious morning have I seen
Flatter the mountain-tops with sovereign eye,
Kissing with golden face the meadows green,
Gilding pale streams with heavenly alchemy;
--Shakespeare, Sonnet 33
Welcome to "Good Planets"!
Today's theme: the last of the ancient elements, Fire.
It all started here, in flames. The astronomers tell us that this good planet was spun out of the gas/dust disk that became our sun. Hot? It reaches 22 million degrees F in the centre, they say. Any heating system here on earth produces an infinitesmal spark in comparison. So it is appropriate that the majority of our photos focus on that fiery chariot.
But not all. Just see what we have found!
First up, from Robin, at DharmaBums, a West Coast sunrise. She writes, "This was exactly what the sunrise looked like, October 25, 2005. There was a light fog that caught all of the morning light. A rather fiery sunrise."
She also sent sunlight captured in a drop of rainwater. "... a fine bit of fire," she says.
And now, for truly fiery colours, Blanket Flowers! They "seem to encapsulate summer," for the "Fat Lady (who) Sings". Don't they just!
From Bev, at Burning Silo, "the reflection of the sun on the elytra of a Dogbane Leaf Beetle (Chrysochus auratus). Found on leaves of a foot-tall poplar seedling in the meadow beside Roger's Pond at Cedar Grove Nature Trail in Marlborough Forest."
Something different; a bit of the heat left-over from our early days.
Ruth, at Body, Soul and Spirit, writes, "my brother and I are climbing towards the crater of the Ceboruco Volcano in Nayarit, Mexico. We passed many steam vents on our climb ... June 2006"
And a second photo from Mexico: Ruth writes, "My parents and brother live in Nayarit, Mexico. They are surrounded by sugar cane fields which are burned the night before harvest.The fire removes excess vegetation and the cane is easier to cut."
From Skylar, another volcano, no longer steaming. Mt. St. Helens, greening up again, "... after the fiery volcanic ash destroyed over 200 square miles of vegetation during the May, 18, 1980 eruption following a 5.1 earthquake. Although the complete eruption was roughly 9 hours long, the area surrounding Mt St Helens was completely changed within minutes and continues to bear witness to these changes in landscape almost 27 years later. It is reassuring to see green again upon these hillsides and mountains."
Creature comforts for after a hard day's work or hiking: coals and flame, cooking supper. From Liza Lee Miller (Egret's Nest), the campfire from her last camping trip.
Supper! "That's Yakitori - Japanese style BBQ chicken. The secret lies in building layers of the Saki based sauce. Delicious!" Looks like it!
From the "Fat Lady".
Bev goes camping, too. This is from a trip through California. She writes, "The weather was unseasonably cold and we just had sleeping bags and no tent, so we very much enjoyed sitting around the fire until late in the evening."
And, with the last clear rays of sunlight, a robin sits on the topmost branch of a tree. A couple of minutes later, the sun had dropped and he was in shadow. Strathcona, BC., last summer.
"Day is Dying in the West". Gloriously.
A January sunset, from Pam, at Tortoise Trail.
"This photo I took from my home on Monday. It is of the sun setting behind Mt. Iliamna* with an accidental raven in the frame." Trixie
*In Alaska. Mt. Iliamna, by the way, is another live volcano. It last erupted in 1953.
Beautiful shades of grey and orange. From SB Gypsy.
A summer sunset. "The temperature exceeded 100 degrees that day - and the humidity was so high it distorted the sun, making it look pulled like taffy."
The Fat Lady Sings, again.
"This flaming sunset in San Luis Obispo, California on Christmas Eve demonstrates perfect gradation of color from yellow to red and was perhaps the most exquisite gift we received for Christmas!"
And finally, Yankee Transplant tells us, "Here is a fire in my hearth. It matches my passion for the planet. Stop by some chilly winter evening and sit with us as we admire the magic that is the flame."
Thanks for the invitation, Yankee! That fire does look good.
And thanks to all of you who contributed your vision this month. I have thoroughly enjoyed the privilege of hosting these February editions of "Good Planets", especially getting to know you better. And having a preview, as the e-mails came in. It felt almost like cheating.
Next month, March, Bev of Burning Silo will be our hostess. She will be continuing with a theme, and writes, "I think I'd like to make it be 'Home' (however people wish to interpret that)."
You can send your contributions to her: bev at magickcanoe dot com .
Thanks again, fellow travellers on this oh-so-amazing "Good Planet". See you over at Bev's next month!
P.S. Celeste, at Dzonoqua's Whistle, has a post that would have been included here if she had been able to send it. Go on over and check it out. Tweet