“It is an elephant!”
“No… That is a pumpkin with a stem…”
“It is neither… that is a fluffy blanket.”
All the above statements might be true, even if they describe the same thing. That is the specialty of the object that is being described. We start out initially with describing them in fantasy based shapes and characters from our rich imagination. But as time goes on, we associate the scientific names with them. We learn what they are ‘officially’ known as. And then the gazing turns to observation, sometimes with the scientific intention but sometimes with curiosity.
Nothing talks about childhood better than the simple joys of finding the mysterious shapes in the clouds or watching the moon follow the moving car. As we grow up, the childhood fantasies slowly fade away, the clouds stop being animals, birds, fairies and magical objects. They become indicators of weather, of air currents, of the mundane things that no longer hold the air of magic around them.
Somewhere between ‘the moon follows me wherever I go’ to ‘the moon revolves around the earth and influences the tides in its oceans’, we all grew up. And like all the things that held our interest in our childhood, clouds lost their magical appeal. But occasionally, the inner child peeks out, trying to find the little bit of hidden magic, the element of fantasy in the routine of everyday life.
And after a long time, today, I went for a long evening walk (well, because no shops near my home stocked the thing I was looking for, and it turned into an extended search where a vehicle was more a hindrance than a help). Might be because of the prompt, or because of the simple brilliance of the periwinkle blue of the sky, I watched the little tufts of Santa’s beards move across the skies as if they were buffeted by the winds.
Some, of course, formed into curious shapes and just like that I was transported back to that forgotten terrace, the early sunrise and the silly laughs as I disagreed with the analyses of shapes that changed momentarily. And for a brief moment in time, the cumulo nimbuses were forgotten, and winged horses emerged, pale white against the powder blue. Just one of those pictures I forgot to take with a camera but will always remember in my mind’s eye.
There is always some place in our minds to enjoy the magic of clouds, to feel inspired, to use that inspiration to create.