Sunset

IMG_3193

*Not the picture I’m describing

Close your eyes. Empty your mind.

Imagine a sunset made up of only three colours. The middle third of the composition is orange, bleeding past the line where the sky ends and the water begins. Then, all of a sudden, cobalt blue, like the flame of a match meeting an edge of sky. Even when you look really hard, there’s no whisper of pink between the tangerine and blueberry. The only thing that separates the duotone is an even more imposing colour, black. It is in the shape of a nose, tilted onto its side, smack in between both colours. This is a lone island is the only spectator in the battle between a slowly dying sun and fiercely vivacious night. 

I don’t think it was the lunar eclipse that made the sunset spectacular because I want to believe that sunsets like that happen every autumn. I didn’t capture it; I missed the decisive moment. But I have reason to believe that I’ve seen it before, years and years before. Sunsets along the Sea to Sky highway are always amazing but they usually look like the photo above: gradations of varying hues of orange and pink and shimmering reflections on what seems like rock hard mirror-like water. But this sunset was more modern, made up of vivacious oranges, cobalts, and no reflections, just rock hard black. It was so simple you could literally draw it with three lines, two separating the orange from the blue sky and water and one squiggly one for the island. But the emotions it dredged up were far from simple, from wonderment to resentment that I wanted to capture rather than savour the moment, and total devastation that comes from fleeting beauty. Beauty makes a parody of memory. And I make a parody of beauty.

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