The Northern Lights. They are both more spectacular than my photos reveal, and less, too. They are like immense silent ghosts frolicking across the sky, curtains of mist, columns of smoke, here one moment, gone the next.
Photos cannot capture the size of this ephemeral event, nor the movement. Sometimes they fill the entire sky and surround you, sometimes there are only one or two giant lonely will-o-the-whisps dancing in the north. The real thing was less colorful than our photos suggest, mostly shades of white and gray, with just the barest hint of color, but the colors I saw in photos other people took last night show that conditions were better elsewhere. But it was so neat where we were, that I cannot complain.
I got to see the lights last night because of my daughter Kivi, and because of the National Weather Service out of Duluth. I’m normally asleep by 10pm but last night Kivi and I had been texting about a story idea, and my imagination was in overdrive (I never sleep very well when I’m in creative mode, regardless if it's writing or knitwear design) and I was having trouble relaxing and was weary but wide awake. So I start scrolling through Facebook on my phone when the National Weather Service post slid through my feed alerting people that the aurora was on display.