L’heure Bleue~


From Wikipedia:

“The blue hour comes from a French expression, l’heure bleue, which refers to the period of twilight each morning and evening where there is neither full daylight nor complete darkness. The time is considered special because of the quality of the light at this time of day. The blue hour is considered especially flattering for people with blond hair in photography and is often also when the smell of the flowers is at its strongest during the summertime.”

I can’t remember the blue hour anywhere else I have ever lived, even though I am sure it was there.  And some say it cannot be experienced with the naked eye, only by camera.   But here in Colorado – I have seen it, touched it, breathed it and taken it in.  I see “the magic hour” sky as a blue with such great depth, such varied levels of intensity and such deep saturation that it stops me in my tracks – whether I am in the yard inhaling the pungent, floral scent of the early evening flowers or walking a country road or leaving Target with bags on each arm.  It just arrests me, intoxicates me.  The blue hour with a full, bright moon completel…dazes me (I slipped away for a moment…). 

It isn’t actually an hour long,  this richly saturated moment in time.  It is fleeting and may only last 20 minutes, during which it is ever changing and kaleidescoping across the sky in breath-taking beauty.  But when it happens?  Oooohhhh-la-la ~ it puts me in a mood.  Mesmerizing.

The twilight mood

L’heure bleue is…Suspension in time.  I am not young, but I am not old.  I am not running from anything, nor to anything.  It isn’t sad, but it isn’t grasping for happiness, either.  It’s not event, it is a moment, a sense.  It is breathing the atmosphere.  It is floating in the ocean as if you belong there.  It is standing on the summit after a long climb as victory strength surges through your body.  The blue hour is a feeling.  It is a sound.  It’s a taste.  It is the rhythm of your breathing, the steady pound of your heart.  It is the fleeting memory flash, recognition flickering, then passing quickly.  It’s coming to consciousness, then fading again just before your mind can become overloaded.  It is an emptying out, a filling up.  And voices from another room, muffled, but sweet laughter.  L’heure blue is a mix of the darkest sleep under heavy quilts and the brightest morning with a gentle breeze on a sheet-covered sleeping porch. It’s angelic choirs and total silence.  It is knowing you’re loved and knowing you love.  The blue hour is beauty.  The blue hour captures me, it holds me.  I am suspended when the hour is blue.


This song from “The Big Easy” starring Dennis Quaid and the pre-surgically-enhanced Ellen Barkin (sung here by Dennis, Bonnie Raittt and Aaron Neville), captures my l’heure bleue mood beautifully, perfectly, maybe.  This is a summer’s eve drive under the heavy-romantic blue-hour sky.  Twilight. This is the song of l’heure bleue.  Oh, yes.

NOTE:  This song is my brother Joe’s favorite because it is about “the smell of morning in a rainy land,” Louisiana.  We lived there as kids and Joe carries the bayou in his heart.  He very sweetly shared this song with me not long ago and I am loving it.  But it is his.  It is only on loan to me.  And you can’t have it, either.  But close your eyes aand listen to this… Thanks, Joe-Joe.

RECENTLY SEEN:  The Blue Hour in decorating at www.houzz.com

NOTE TO SELF: June 26, sometime after 9 o’clock  pm….the magic hour & a full moon.  Watch for it…

2 thoughts on “L’heure Bleue~

  1. I want to honor this post well…I will return at the proper time. I can say here and now…very nice job! You have touched my soul.

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