After our first real rain in six-months, the city is Windex clean, and the patch of ocean visible from the far corner of our property, glistens silver blue. Today I've done what I do every morning at dawn, picked up my camera and walked out into crisp air to capture the views from this hill.
Every morning it's different. Sometimes overcast with a sea and sky of gray; sometimes the whole scene is striped with pastels. At this early hour, the pin-prick lights of oil derricks, five-miles out, sparkle like Christmas trees on water. And the sky above them beams persimmon.
That fragment of ocean -- iridescent piece of puzzle -- I cannot resist. That's what does it, what pulls me into the yard: the sorbet colors, and the sunrise fleeting and translucent as a memory.
The magic moves fast. From the houses on the hills - which at pre-dawn, when the sky is still dark, and the merest tinge of lapis barely a vibration -- porch lights glow like fireflies on the mountains. But as the sun lifts and light washes over, the porch lights disappear and windows become reflections. A ranch house with long rectangular windows gleams burnished copper. The windows of a three-story Mediterranean, burn nectarine.
First one, then two, and at its peak, when the sun rises above the canyon to bare its first molten streak, some picture windows blaze like exploding stars. This performance takes place every day between 5:30 and 7:00 am, and is, for me, a woman of eclectic beliefs, a kind of morning mass.
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This day, this day, so alive on my breath, let me enter it like the liquid of a still pond. Let me wade as if swimming in warm water. Let conflicts wash over me without connecting. Let them drift away in my reflecting sky.