The spring IS here. The warm, reddish, yellow light from the sunset is flooding through my study room window as I write (it is almost 7.30 pm here when I’m writing this). This window is facing west-north-west and in the winter the sun never makes it all the way to shine through this window . Now I semi-close the blinders for a while not to get blinded and disturb the computer screen, and when the summer is here I will complain about it being so hot in the study in the late afternoons and evenings, but right now I’m only happy about it.
This light is amazing, ethereal, beautiful and filled with longing and hope. Very poetic. There is a very special feeling to the first evening realizing that the light is here again. It is like being filled with an almost complete joy and happiness and sense of freedom – all in an instant. Like being struck by a lightning of hope, happiness and longing. Everything feels possible and withing grasp again. A very strong sense of presence and being alive – of the joy of being alive and also the bitter sweetness of realizing that life is not forever even if it feels like that. This light and all the goodness it brings (I know I sound silly and besotted, but so it is) makes up for the long winter – and more. The bursting spring light and the following white nights in the summer (even here in the south-mid part of Sweden) is what I would miss the most if I were to live somewhere else for a while. It is delicate and overwhelming. Each year.
Spring flood – impossible to capture, but I couldn’t resist posting this photo anyway.
NEW! If you click on the flood you come to my flickr video and can hear the sound of it (5 s)
This evening light and the longing for it has been described by the Swedish writer Vilhelm Moberg. In Unto a Good Land – the second book in his epos about a Swedish family which emigrates from Sweden to the United States of America in the middle of the 19th century he describes how a Swedish female immigrant – Kristina – yearns for the evening light in the spring and summer . He writes beautifully – it is truly heart breaking – about how Kristina longs for the blue, eternal light in the spring and summer and how her longing never dies. The “Emigrant suite” is both interesting and gripping- one of the big classic tales of the American immigrants. They settle in a place – Lake Ki-Chi-Saga – in the northern part of the US – near the big lakes which has a nature that is similar to the Swedish landscape (mid Sweden) , but it lacks the evening light in the spring and summer.
Below is a short excerpt from Unto a Good Land where Kristina’s longing after the pale, blue evening light is described. Moberg’s suite about the Swedish emigrants is one of the best and gripping stories written in the Swedish language. The translation of this book was made by Gustaf Lannerstock and you can find the whole book at Google books here. More info on the Swedish emigration to the United States in the 19th century and the writer Vilhelm Moberg can be found here.
“The sun’s arc climbed, the days lengthened, but the evenings had not yet begun to lighten. The sun departed and darkness came in his place , but no twilight under a pale heaven lingered over the earth. Kristina waited; spring was as yet only beginning . April came and brought sun-warm days to the shores of Lake Ki-Chi-Saga, but the evenings remained almost as dark as in the winter. Kristina still waited. And, when she at last realized that her waiting was futile, her thoughts wandered to a land where the evenings in the spring were light. After the many chores which each day fell to her with their unchanging sameness, her body was tired as she lay down on her bed in the evening. But her mind and soul wouldn’t rest, she lay awake with her thoughts. Outside the small, loghouse windows the night was dark, but she lay with her eyes wide open and gazed into the darkness where nothing could be seen. As spring progress, with darkness still prevailing, her sleepness hours increased. She still gazed through the darkness, towards that land where evenings were light in the spring. Memories reawakened, images stood clear. She and her sisters sat “twilighting” at the window. They used to delay lighting of the candles. By the light of the spring evening they would sit there, talking in hushed voices to each other. They never spoke aloud at twilighting – the gathering dusk of a April evening called for a whispered talk/…/ A year had passed since the April evening where she had said goodbye to her parents and her sisters at the gate of her childhood home./…/That evening had been light – one whole long twilight that still lit her way home on sleepless nights. It had rained throughout that day, but cleared towards the evening. There had been a fragrance of spring over the black fields and green meadows as she walked away from the farm where she was born.”
Water Puddles are spring.