Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Lantern in a Tree Works for Me

Sometimes, reality can be a drag. Even when it's not awful it can be a little dull. That's why people love romantic movies, read sci-fi, dig the occult. We crave magic in our lives.

I say we should have as much magic as we want. (Probably not while we're driving--reality comes in handy when you're operating heavy machinery.) But surely at home. Candles at dinner. A fire in the fireplace. Twinkling lights in the garden. Whatever works.

So I'll ask the question: what works? What's magic for you?

28 comments:

Shell Sherree said...

How pretty, Petrea! Twinkly lights, a bunch of flowers, some R&B in the background and the company of loved ones sounds magical to me. Wishing us all {especially Pepe} a magical weekend.

Anonymous said...

ginab:

Dogs and kitty with full tummies, Yayo singing and playing his guitar

Speedway said...

Oh, I thought a bit then realized there's so much! In the morning, I check my e-mail to find a message from a friend. Our shared idiosyncrasies let me know I'm not alone, and who sent me this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfsWnv2yoI4


When I get my breakfast, I may get lucky and hear "Toast" played on the radio, which always makes me smile.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BILAFuSi-i0

I like the pale pink tint inside my cat's ear, always bent in anticipation of her human's movements, and the clear-eyed alertness of my turtle's gaze.

Though I like the various colors of the seasons, I'm looking forward to the winter solstice, after which the days begin to lengthen towards spring and pink flowers on the redbuds. Don't know why, but those daggone things always excite my eyes.

Lunch on Wednesdays with some Mensa friends. Food isn't all that great, but the talk is always interesting. Then I go somewhere else for spiced chai latte and oatmeal raisin cookies.

The sound of an Indy car's engine, testing at the speedway.

And I have a painting, a moonrise over the river as a calming reminder of serene and happy times.

Joanne said...

Beautiful thoughts here. The sound of distant waves. Stars in the sky over that sea. Music, live music always.

Petrea said...

Good morning, everyone. I can think of more now: when the mountains turn pink at the end of the day. The lights of Mount Wilson glowing in the sky at night. The little moan that Boz makes when he's happy. Your lists reminded me. Thank you.

Latino Heritage said...

Speedway, love your entry

Materteral me - Hugs from Littles
Going to Meetings me - The Parking Fairy
Comadre me - time with other women
Outdoorsy me - cool air on my face
Creative me - a well turned phrase
Romantic me - My honey and Brahms
Practical me - Coffee in the morning

Pasadena Adjacent said...

There is a home on lower Linda Vista road near the Las Palmas bridge. Every holiday season, instead of traditional lights, they put out several large red chinese paper lanterns near the street. Each lamp is illuminated by the use of a bundle of twinkle lights inserted into their centers. Only the ends of the light chain are seen flowing forth from the bottom of the lanterns.. It's magical

Bellis said...

That's a very magical-looking lamp - not the usual streetlight, is it? Reminds me of Grimm's fairytale land.

Magic for me is seeing a large lupin in full flower in the sandy riverbed of Hahamongna. In November! It makes me realize that there are advantages over living in England at this time of year.

Petrea said...

It strikes me that so far everything we've listed is real, not magic at all. Maybe the whole idea is that these things spark magic in our imaginations. I know when I saw this lamp in the tree it set me to thinking of elves and fairies.

Katie said...

Awesome photo! The lantern hangs there with no visible means of support, like it magically flew in to light up those trees. But the lights in the windows and on the front porches bring me back to the reality of the beautiful scene.

Most magical moments for me are the unexpected and ephemeral ones that mother nature offers up: beautiful end-of-the-day light on a fall tree, interesting clouds eerily lit up by the moon, a rainbow over the bay that appears and disappears so quickly I think I imagined it, the sun at just the right angle during my morning commute to San Francisco that light up certain windows on the skyscrapers like they're briefly on fire. (I was lucky enough to have my camera to take a photo of the fall tree last weekend, but I need to carry my camera around more to try and capture other magical scenes.)

TheChieftess said...

Waking up to a foot of snow on the deck, white everywhere I look...

...and knowing that with my new snow tires, I can still get around!!!

altadenahiker said...

This gets me all soppy and goopy, because you're right, all of you. Nothing more magical than the unexpected magic you find in daily life. Sometimes that means just paying attention.

Irina said...

I was so interested to read the answers (the magic of good questions).
Fresh wind, nature, driving on unknown road, painting, sounds (rain, birds, sea, cats' purr), reading, blogging. Life is good and magic in so many ways.

Petrea said...

I'm soppy and goopy, I admit! Sometimes I wish I could snark a little more, but I usually write my posts too late in the day when all my snap is gone.

Oooh, yes, Irina, an unknown road. That's one of mine, too, I love that.

Susan Campisi said...

Yesterday I was bed-ridden with a fever. I spent the night vacillating between sweats and chills, thinking I had the flu. Today the fever is gone and though I'm still under the weather I feel much better. The body's ability to heal itself is amazing, maybe even magical.

Susan Campisi said...

Oh, and that's a beautiful photo. I love the light surrounding the lantern, like an aura.

J.J. in L.A. said...

A heartfelt hug from my man. : )

Petrea said...

Right now I'm adding to my list the smell of cornbread baking in the oven, especially on a rainy day.

Cafe Pasadena said...

I thot it went, "And a lantern in a pear tree!"

Anonymous said...

Slipping into a warm jacuzzi to join my gal definitely works for me. The very first thought that came to my mind.

Petrea said...

That works for me, too, Cafe.

Petrea said...

Hee hee, anonymous, our comments crossed in the ether. I kind of like the way it reads.

Ms M said...

Love your photo and the ideas people have written. I agree with so many of them :)

Dirk said...

This is way late and you'll probably not even see it, but--you read sci fi? How excellent! Who are your favorite writers in the genre? Me = Bradbury, Iain Banks, David Brin, among others.

I totally get the lantern-in-a-tree-as-magic. I think that comes from looking at lots of Maxfield Parrish when I was a kid. He had a big thing for lanterns and the light they make; plus the natural light in his paintings has always struck me as distinctly that of southern California.

Petrea said...

Hi Dirk. Not really--well, some. I was just using those as examples. I don't actually dig the occult all that much. And I like some romantic movies, not all.

I love Bradbury because he's a great writer. I like Fredrick Pohl, though it's been a while since I read his stuff. My thing is just good fiction, though right now because of what I'm writing I'm reading modern fiction with an element of fantasy to it: Daphne DuMaurier comes to mind. She's damned fine on the page. Currently I'm reading Niffenegger's "The Time Traveler's Wife" and it's terrific. Not sci-fi, but good literature with a strong tone of fantasy to it.

Then there are the classics. Don't get me started.

Dirk said...

Petrea, if you've not read her, give Doris Lessing a try. She's a great novelist (Nobel Prize winning) in her own right, and her science fictional series "Canopus in Argos" is really amazing.

Petrea said...

Great, thanks. She's on my list.

Amy said...

Fake twinkly fireflies in my backyard, glass lanterns with tealights hanging from my ceiling, fake snow drifts on top of my book cases... it's the little things. :)