Last night there was the most amazing rainbow directly over our street. It was a huge arc of color bands that seem to say to me "You are in exactly the right place." The whole evening sky was absolutely astonishing. I thought about running for my camera, but chose instead to simply stand in my front yard gaping at it in the light rain, soaking in every minute of it as the horizon transitioned from golds to pinks.
I have neither the quality of camera or skills as a photography to fully do it justice. So instead, I took pictures in my heart.
I thought of other moments like that - images that I have captured in my memory that were so surreal in their beauty that I would savor them always...
- my eldest son sitting in a field of dandelions grinning at me when he was 10 months old
- the first time I saw the Grand Canyon
- the glaciers in Alaska
- a certain overlook along the Wenatchee River with the Cascade mountains in the background
- the pyramids of Giza
And then there are other senses that have less to do with what I saw, but more with what I heard or smelled or tasted or felt.
There were some kind of flowers in my brother's yard in Florida that smelled absolutely stunning in the evenings. I never knew what they were and I can't even begin to describe it, but I've never forgotten it. I love the smell of fresh bread baking, of the ozone in the sky right before a big rain, and of my beloved right out of the shower with no cologne - just man and soap.
Favorite sounds that have touched my heart - my grand son's belly laugh, loving neighbors singing Christmas Carols at my doorstep, the ringing bells at the Orthodox church in Walla Walla on Pascha morning, waves crashing on rocks at a certain beach I once went to, and the special symphony that is the mix of light wind in the trees, birdsong and my backyard fountain bubbling.
I cannot take a picture of those things, but they are just as dear to me as the images I've seen. I do love taking pictures to look back on as a way to remember places, people and experiences. But sometimes pictures reduce, rather than preserve, a moment. Sometimes the grandeur of night sky, or a mountain vista or a beloved's smile just can't be captured with film or pixels.
It's at times like that when I just stand still, catch my breath, and take a picture with my heart.