rainbows are circles

rainbows are circles

spring rains are a good time to keep an eye out for rainbows.  look for rainbows whenever the the sun is behind you, and the rain is in front of you. did you know that all rainbows are circular? it’s just that the horizon interrupts the full circle so we only see part of an arc. i just learned that! people in airplanes can occasionally see full circle rainbows. i went down the rabbit hole of rainbow optics today. i’ve included the quote below which best tries to explain the phenomenon simply.  anyway, this circle of winter weeds stems reminds me of both rainbows and rabbit holes. two of my favorite spring things.

winter weeds

p.s. “Rainbows don’t exist! They are nowhere in space. You cannot touch them or drive around them. They are a collection of rays from glinting raindrops that happen to reach our eyes. Raindrops glint rainbow rays at an angle of 42 degrees from the point directly opposite the sun. All the drops glinting the rainbow are on the surface of a cone with its point at your eye. They can be near and far. Other drops not on the cone also glint sunlight into rainbow colors but their rays do not reach our eyes. We only see those on the cone. When you look down the cone you see a circle. So rainbows are circles!”

  • Carol says:

    Fascinating. While living is rural upstate NY I once saw a complete circle of rain bow around the sun. Well, an icebow I guess it would be called – it was thrilling

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good news, bad news

good news, bad news

i feel like i should explain that i have been a wee distracted lately. the 1.5 meters of snow that fell on us in february is now melting quickly. that is the good news. but the ground is still frozen solid, so there is nowhere for the water to get absorbed. that is the bad news. so, in our specific case, it means it is running to low ground and has found its way into our basement. so for several days, i have been trying to divert melt water away from the house, and vacuum up was does come in. in other words, STILL has been a bit of an afterthought. and yet these clematis vine bits on my studio table caught my attention today.

dried clematis

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vernal equinox eve

vernal equinox eve

i am gathering bits of ribbon in anticipation of celebrating the vernal equinox. here at the 45th parallel, the equinox places us briefly at the center of everything. halfway between the lightest and darkest days of the year. halfway between the equator and north pole. light, dark. north, south. hot, cold. everything will be in balance here tomorrow. for one day.

wild iris leaves

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  • Kimbersew says:

    sounds like the perfect day for a hot-fudge sundae: hot cold, dark and white. Happy Spring from western MA!

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color fast

color fast

i’m curious why some leaves hold their color in winter while others don’t. these stems sticking out through the snow look like late september to me–the time of goldenrod and yellow daisies. it certainly doesn’t say mid-march. why so sturdy? why so golden yellow?

unidentified winter leaves (possibly milkweed)

  • Andrea says:

    I am enamored with the golden brown dried hydrangeas in front of my condo building (which our building manager usually trims off before winter but didn’t this year). It makes me wonder the same thing and marvel at how some things can be so beautiful when they’re “dead”.

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paper jungle

paper jungle

these bulbs produced paper-white narcissus flowers. now they appear to be producing crepe-paper ribbonry. i wonder what kind of paper they will make next. airplanes? napkins? plates? trails? news? tiger? wax? money? fly? graph? parchment? towels?

paperwhite bulbs and spent blooms

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