... or "My Ode To June Sunsets".
Today's summer solstice marks the culmination of our Scandinavian white nights. It feels like it was just yesterday the longest night was upon us, which meant the onset of the best part of the year; alas now we are heading in the opposite direction. Even though light evenings will be granting us their stunning presence until the beginning of August, the end of June marks the end of a certain magical period that always seems to be gone before it even begun.
White nights fill me with an endless feeling of awe and astonishment. They bring so much enchantment to my surroundings, lifting my spirits and reinforcing my belief in the mysterious. No wonder that already the ancient man built neolithic monuments to celebrate the event of the solstices.
Each evening, the June sun bestows upon us sunset shows that take my breath away.
As the golden disk moves slowly towards the skyline almost twenty hours after it has risen, it turns into a large, fiery globe, instigating moments of great anticipation. Its shape seems to float above the Earth, as if guided by an unseen hand until it meets the horizon in a covert kiss, upon which it spills across the sky like molten steel. Moving slowly out of sight, while colouring our northwestern skies blood red at midnight, the sun only disappears out of view for a short while, never really vanishing, leaving behind strokes of rainbow shades. Simultaneously, the northeast is already the colour of silver. As we move into the small hours of the morning, the imminent sunrise alters the silver sky first into platinum and then the colour of rose gold. In the stillness of the night, day breaks with all its splendor. The golden disk reappears from its short slumber, casting a violet glow across a dewy landscape. And the bird song begins.
Rising almost five hours earlier then in winter, the midnight sun adds about eleven hours more light to our summer days. As we cross the threshold of light, I will try to savour every moment of the longest day and disregard the sharp sting of melancholy, that its departure always instigates in the very core of my being...
The below is a series of photographs taken from my windows during a dramatic sunset two days prior to the summer solstice. As the night progressed, the skies became clear and the splendor of a stunning white night a reality.
Please click the images for a larger view.