Can I see a beam of light

I'm not sure exactly how detailed you'd like to get, but this is a simple explanation:

When light waves strike an object three things may happen. The light can be reflected, absorbed or it may change its direction.

What happens to light depends on the kind of object or material that it hits. Transparent objects, like glass, let light waves pass through without mixing them up. You can see through this material. Translucent material also allows rays to pass through, but it mixes them up so that you cannot see through such objects clearly. Opaque materials don’t let any light pass through.

Reflection

Most objects do not produce their own light. You can see these objects because light from the sun or from a lamp bounces off them and then travels to your eyes.

Some objects reflect little light, others, like mirrors or water reflect almost all the light because they are smooth and flat. The rays bounce off in only one direction. Reflected light also makes things sparkle and shine. When light shines on a normal object, like a tree, the rays bounce off in many direction

Source(s): http://www.english-online.at/science/light-and-opt...