The suddenly warm temperature on top of deep snow raised a lush fog. Last night, driving on a narrow road next to the lake, I said, "This is what death looks like in the movies. Driving into nothing." All the familiar landmarks had become invisible, and I felt lost even when I knew exactly where I was.
The fog remained, but it was easier to see things in the morning. I remembered the photographs I'd taken in the graveyards last December -- here and here -- so I went back to that place to see what the fog was doing to it this year -- and to do some things to it myself with the fisheye lens.
As I drove into the cemetery, just by chance, on the radio's "Sinatra" channel, Van Morrison was singing "That's Life." I can't find the Van Morrison version, but here's Frank Sinatra. Lyrics (by Dean Kay and Kelly Gordon):
I said that's life, and as funny as it may seemWhat a crazy song! It's all life affirming and then, impetuously, suicidal.
Some people get their kicks,
Stompin' on a dream
But I don't let it, let it get me down,
'Cause this fine ol' world it keeps spinning around...
That's life and I can't deny it
Many times I thought of cutting out
But my heart won't buy it
But if there's nothing shakin' come this here July
I'm gonna roll myself up in a big ball and die
IN THE COMMENTS: Original George says:
I like the Jewish custom of leaving a pebble by the tombstone -- a pittance of memory by the eternity of death. Even if you could find them, a few bright flowers on a day like today would be overwhelmed by the bleakness of nature. Sad that the Irish custom of taking a whizz on the most elaborate tombstone has fallen into disuse. A few yellow streaks against the mausoleum of some forgotten notable reminds us of the transience of life and the abiding value of malice and envy in human affairs.Sir Archy -- our favorite ghost! -- says:
I know, Madam, that Entertainments of the Nature of a Turn through a Graveyard, such as you have taken, are apt to raise dark & dismal Thoughts in tim'rous Minds and gloomy Imaginations; but, for my own Part, because of my Sanguine Nature, I do not know what 'tis to be Melancholy; and can, therefore, take a View of Nature in her deep and solemn Scenes, with the same Pleasure as in her most gay and delightful ones, especially when contemplating such Pictures as you have made upon this Occasion.Dark & dismal Thoughts in tim'rous Minds and gloomy Imaginations... I have these sometimes. But I must say that this morning, I wasn't the slightest bit spooked by the thought of all the dead bodies as I stalked about looking for the oldest headstones and the most gnarled trees. The winter cemetery is more evocative of death than the green one, which I have also photographed, but in winter, I work more efficiently. I'm not here for meditation. I'm here for art. I concentrate on that and on not stepping in snowbanks higher than my boots.
You can get van morrison's version at amazon as an mp3 or on the album 'The Best of Van Morrison Volume 3', on rhapsody, and on itunes...Ah, yes. Good point. Done, with iTunes. Now, I'm listening to it on infinite repeat as I write this.