Spare The Air


Spare The Air

It’s lunch hour in San Francisco on a foggy day. The sun tries to shed some light on the subject burning through the layers of car exhaust and jet streams from the nearby airport. The rush hour is in full force as drivers slowly move in lines like ants on the various freeways trying to free themselves of their cars. The local news station warns residents that it’s a Spare The Air Day.

Seated on a park bench near the bay munching on a sandwich the view is amazing. The yellow, orange and crimson streaks of color in the sky are beautiful. The sun is weaving in and out of the cloud layer making the afternoon light look magical. Without some pollution, the colors would never be quite like that. I am reminded of how a little smog can still be admired and enjoyed.

noon sun shimmers
a bayside Kodachrome moment
spare the air lunch hour

© Rebecca Sanchez 2017

Photography by +Woojin Yu follow his work on Google+.

A haibun written with my friends at dVerse~Poets Pub. In California, a Spare The Air Day is when the air is still and polluted to the point that making fires in fireplaces, burning garbage and other things that could add to the problem are prohibited until further notice. This is because we have very strict pollution laws. Although this picture looks like total pollution it’s mostly fog which we have a lot here. Despite my words, California has some of the best air in the US because most of our pollution goes down to the central valley.


15 thoughts on “Spare The Air

    1. Thank you, Frank! You should take the time to look at some of Woojin Yu’s photos on Google he’s another good photographer friend of mine. I’m glad you realized the photo was not really all pollution I twisted the meaning a little to write my haibun.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. A beautiful photograph and it is strange how nature creates beauty in air pollution. I really wasn’t aware this level of pollution still existed in the US.
    Kind regards
    Anna :o]

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry I fooled you, Anna. That picture is really a foggy day which I changed to fit my haibun. After reading your comment I decided to go back and change my wording and explanation a little to reflect the truth. I don’t want people thinking we have bad pollution here because it’s not true we just have strict air control rules. I invite you to reread this poem once so you can see what I mean. We do have Spare The Air days here so that pollution doesn’t get worse and it’s usually on very still days.


  2. On my first trip to Oregon, while driving near Corvallis, my son-in-law stopped the car and suggested we all get out and star gaze. The sky was spectacular. City living deprives us of starry nights and gives us smog-palleted sunrises in exchange!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been out in the middle of South Dakota at night and it was the best sky I ever saw. I was out there on a dinosaur dig for our museum at the time and it was gorgeous. I miss skies like that living here. Thank you for visiting, Beverly!


    1. California has some of the strictest laws in the US when it comes to pollution and our ecology. I ride across from the airport quite a bit. I spend a lot of time outdoors thinking. Thanks so much, Grace, see you again soon.


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