February 11, 2015

Icicles: Frozen Light

It's been a banner winter for icicles: they are more abundant and larger than I've ever seen them. In the early morning they glow with the warm light of the rising sun.

The temperatures have been warm enough to melt the roof snow, which drips and drips, forming more and longer icicles; the temperatures have been cold enough that they've hung on for days.

On the north side of the house, the icicles have joined forces, forming an almost solid wall of ice at the roof line.

A veil of glittering light enlivens the landscape.

Pillows of snow end in daggers of ice.

The honeysuckle at the front door is dripping with ice, while a geranium blooms in indoor warmth.

I so often wonder about the emotions of my cats. I would like to assign a wistful feeling to Poppy as she stares out at the cold and snow; does she think of summer?

This afternoon, with a loud Crash! the snow and ice came off the roof. The cats were traumatized: frozen in place, they wondered what in the world had happened. Two milder days, with temperatures around 20º (that feels warm, believe me!) and some sun, caused the snow to slide off the metal roof. I'm going to miss the light captured in those icicles.


  1. Icicles and ice in other forms do wonderful things with light. I'm thinking of Andy Goldsworthy's work with ice. And I faintly recall a story by Garrison Keillor about the dangers of those icicles we admire. This is the climate for growing such sculptures.

    1. It's definitely the right climate. As for danger, the icicles on my house are safely close to the wall, where I never walk.

    2. Cat -picture is great!
      I agree with James. Are you familiar with Goldsworthy's art?
      What would we do without water? Even just visually?

    3. Glad you like Poppy at the window.
      Yes, I'm very familiar with Goldworthy's work, though I hadn't seen his work with ice before. I haven't been a fan, finding his sculpture a bit too sweet for my taste, but his ice pieces are very nice.
      Visually, if we didn't know water, we wouldn't miss it; if it all suddenly dried up, we'd be dead too soon to worry about it.

  2. Well that throws cold water on it

    1. Sorry, I'm feeling a little cranky with more arctic air on the way.

    2. You make me laugh.
      Consider some alternatives, a nice tick-bite, for example...the lack of which is a stitch in winter's silver lining.

    3. Hah, hah....indeed, each season has its woes.