Damon Falke is an American writer living in northern Norway. His work includes, among others, By Way of Passing, Now at the Uncertain Hour, and the films, Climbing Eros, Koppmoll and There Is No Separation. He is a frequent contributor to arts journal JUKE.
Summer comes slowly to the far north. Cold days peel into months, and the world stands tarnished with greys and drab olives. A day arrives, usually in June, when the grass is green, the peaks across the sund are capped with a cobalt sky, and the light is unflinchingly radiant and clear. It is the light you cannot forget. On the shoreline below my house, stones are rounded again with shadows and light. Gaps between the boards on nausts can be counted from a distance. It is the sort of light that when you are outside you look at your own skin, rubbing your arms as you do, to see if you, too, are covered by the light. I think about the late Classical scholar Maurice Bowra, who suggested that the quality of sunlight and how it struck the mountains and sea in Greece affected the minds and actions of those ancient peoples. If the topographies of deserts and tundra can shape peoples, then why not the sun?