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Over The Rainbow Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

8 November 2016

The storms had passed through so we had gone for a walk. We were about to cross Taraval St. but a big delivery van pulled right up to the crosswalk, obscuring our view of oncoming traffic. And theirs of us. We could hear cars coming, so we held back.

South After The Storm. Shot from the sidewalk with a Lensbaby Twist 60.

There was no stop sign to protect us (and even if there were, the truck would have blocked it). So we took matters into our own hands and carefully poked our head out to check for traffic before we started across.

Our reward was this scene looking south on the next block.

Those purple mountains beyond the haze in the distance, crowned by fluffy white clouds, are what stopped us dead in our tracks. They aren't usually so clearly defined, so sharply delineated. It was as if they were our guiding principles, not quite within reach but always before us.

We stood there admiring them.

Then we noticed in the middle distance a hill with a community built on it, that collection of neighbors and businesses and schools and fire houses and everything else it takes to keep a community up.

It sparkled in the autumn sunlight.

We took our shot, letting the utility poles guide our composition. We thought the sidewalk and street would make a nice frame of reference.

But we were wrong.

What you notice _ of all in the image here is that sidewalk and street. Not the mountains, not the populated hill.

It's your own, sure. Your own driveway, the bright sidewalk that crosses it, the utility poles rising up from the sidewalk, the asphalt street that brings you home.

But it drops off suddenly. The poles sink, the parked car is pointed down, you notice yourself eye-level with the tops of the trees. The image seems to be saying we're cut off from that community and those principles.

We weren't happy about that reversal of effect. We'd been drawn to the scene by the mountains but the image turns out to be almost claustrophobic. So we let the image sit on our hard drive, unfinished.

But this morning we were awakened to Renee Montagne's rebroadcast of a story about Hawaiian musician Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, famous for his rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow.

Even though it came to him in the middle of the night, he persuaded a sound studio to open at 3 a.m. to record it. One take and he took his copy home. The studio later slipped it onto a collection of Hawaiian songs and it became such a hit that it's more popular the Judy Garland's original.

That song is about the distance between your driveway and your dreams. It expresses the desire to over come that distance, the hope that you will one day, why not, achieve those dreams. It just doesn't tell you how.

But we knew what to do.

We rolled out of bed acrobatically, downed an espresso in one gulp, washed our face and walked up to the polling booth, standing in line with our neighbors to be among the first on our street to vote today.

It's the one day of the year your dreams are no further away than the end of your arm. You have only to reach out and make your mark.


Very nice connection! -- Mike Melneck

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