Monday, April 18, 2016

What does the sky taste like?

"A long time ago, the sky was very close to the earth. When people were hungry, they just reached up and ate the sky." - Connor

"What does the sky taste like?" -Keiralyn

"Shh KK, I'm getting to that part."

This is the beginning of a Nigerian folktale that my son shared with me as part of his homework. He giggled about what different flavors the sky would be. Keiralyn asked what the clouds were made of and if she could taste those too. Of course! I didn't feel like giving them the rational, scientific, adult explanation about it all. Sometimes you have to let your imagination run away with you…

    But there wasn't a single could in the sky today. It was wall-to-wall blue skies as Connor calls it. It's been blue skies for several days now, and while it's a nice change for some, I don't like it. When the sky is an unceasing blanket of blue, without even a cloud for reference, looking up feels more ominous. Spatially, it seems like the sky stretches on forever down a tunnel without end, or is about to abruptly cave in. Either way, it gives the disturbing effect of vertigo. Not being able to determine exactly how far the sky is from the ground makes you feel like you might possibly be a specimen in someone's jar.  

A clear night sky on the other hand, is a lot more comforting. You can use a telescope to escape through a porthole in the atmosphere to see beyond the sky. This is always humbling. It reminds you that you are a tiny creature in a very big world. Distant stars shining down through the darkness serve as a reminder that, in spite of your own insignificance, someone cared enough to poke holes in the top of your jar.

The taste of the sky is still undetermined. Mostly because the sky became angry after being carelessly wasted by people and withdrew from the Earth.