by Carl Strang
Transformations of familiar landscapes happen from time to time. Some of these are rhythmic: the changes of the seasons, which can bring in turn a blanket of white, an explosion of green, or a kaleidoscope of color; and the dawn-dusk alternation, which brings light or the cloak of darkness. Last Thursday brought a different kind of transformation, when a string of storms dumped more than 4 inches of rain overnight, elevating the northeast Illinois streams, and raising the lakes and marshes of Mayslake Forest Preserve to rare levels. Most dramatic was the Mays’ Lake outlet area.
One day later the flood had subsided.
As you can see, the culvert that normally feeds the outlet stream was unable to accommodate the outflow.
Transformations of familiar landscapes change us as well. In the case of a flood, our personal transformations can be tragic and sad, or they can fill us with wonder. The worse outcome, perhaps, is to be totally unmoved by such powerful events.