Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Ice Flowers

Most of the snow disappeared yesterday
while a few hat-less, slushy snowmen stood watch
over the shady spots still blanketed in white.
The weather warmed and is to continue warming
 until we reach a balmy 70 degrees later in the week.
Early predictions for the weekend?
More winter snow. 

photo courtesy of morguefile.com

Oh yes, just when it looks like winter is departing,
January's frostiness gives way to February's ... frostiness.
Winter will be reasserting itself, I guess, determined to stay until Spring
finally shoves its way onto the stage sometime in March.
So let's talk ice flowers.

snowflake photo courtesy of www.snowcrystals.com

The term "ice flowers" is from Kenneth G. Libbrecht,
professor of physics at CalTech, snowflake researcher and microphotographer,
 and author of the book "The Snowflake."
Dr. Libbrecht tells us that snowflakes come in a number of shapes and sizes,
including prisms, stars, hexagonal crystals, star-like dendrites, fern-like dendrites,
hollow columns, and capped columns like the one in this next photo,
which I am amazed by:

snowflake photo courtesy of www.snowcrystals.com

Click here: types of snowflake shapes for more types, including 12-pointed stars.
Click on this next link to see more snowflakes:  "Snowflake Gallery."

snowflake photo courtesy of www.snowcrystals.com

The hidden beauty of these snowflakes
 reminds me of a quote from Dale Carnegie,
the author of How to Win Friends and Influence People:

Two men looked out from prison bars,
One saw the mud, the other saw the stars.

It is amazing that snow, our beautiful nuisance,
is comprised of sifting, drifting works of crystalline art.
So next time it snows, 
I hope I will remember to see the "stars" instead of the "mud."
And if I'm lucky, I'll gather a few ice flowers.

No comments: