breathless with adoration 1

Many photographers live in morning light; in its coolness, its intolerance, its sting. But I work in evening light; with its softness; its solitude; its warmth. Evening light gently unwraps the landscape; it bathes in new-mowed grass; it hums with drowsy songbirds. It calls the fading light to walls, to meadows, to marshes. I found the tiny Forget-me-nots along the edge of a new-mowed meadow.

This was my first time in North Park in May. (Last year, I spent the first part of May in Norther Ontario and the end of May in Peru.) The shoreline of the man-made lake and the banks of the creeks that feed it are lined with clumps of yellow Iris.

Paleyellows are native to Europe, northern Africa, and temperate Asia. A valued horticultural plant, paleyellow iris was brought to North America and escaped cultivation, often spreading down watercourses or washing downstream in floods. A review of early floras documented paleyellow iris in Virginia as early as 1771. Paleyellow iris is widely distributed across most of the United States and Canada. In the eastern United States, paleyellow iris is found in forested wetlands, open wetlands, and in riparian and floodplain communities.2

Golden light rounds the edges; it hides in leaves; it dissipates trials and tribulations; it calls to tranquility, to prayer. – Now in the fading light of day/ maker of all to you we pray/ That with your ever watchful love/ you’ll guard and keep us from above/ Help and defend us through the night/ danger and terror put to flight/ Never let evil have its way/ preserve us for another day.3

1  Wordsworth, William. “It is a Beauteous Evening, Calm and Free.”
2  U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer)
3  Monks, Mount Savior Monastery. Opening Hymn of Compline.