l a v a f l o w

[ 00:10 thursday 12 june – isola di stromboli ]

i’m sitting on the starboard bow of antonio’s catamaran on a flat flat sea looking up at the stream of lava coming down the west side of the island. the air is hot and humid. i’m sitting here without a shirt. a three-quarter moon casts a ghostly blue light over everything. the black silhouette of the volcano in front of me is sliced down the middle with a line of bright orange. to the right it forms a solid stream. to the left it breaks into pieces which tumble and bounce down the mountainside. it’s indescribably beautiful. there’s a sense of incredible force, but also a filigree delicacy to the shimmering particles of fire.

the lava makes a continuous grinding sound, underpinned by a deep bass rumbling. every few seconds there’s a fat crump as a mass of solidifying lava hits the sea.

this is the first time i’ve seen the lava flow from the water.

with my new sony ericsson telephone and gprs account i can send this message right away, from where i’m sitting in the boat. i’m still a bit awed by the fact.

: c***

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