Friday, March 19, 2010

May 19: Young Moon

The sky was wide and clear over open fields tonight as we left our friends' house in Lincolnville. Directly overhead, red Mars shone. Leo the Lion crouched below Mars, ready to pounce. The Big Dipper has tipped sideways now, about to spill its ethereal contents northward. To the east, bright Sirius has risen above Hatchet Mountain, Orion even higher. And to the northeast, above the house but below the smudge of the Pleaides, the waxing crescent Moon. A thin sliver of a moon, barely born. And within the embrace of the horns of the Moon, the shadowy visage of the rest of the Moon was visible, the old Moon in the new Moon's arms.

Although I've seen this phenomenon often, I've never really thought about what caused it. It turns out we can see the entire Moon because sunlight reflecting off the Earth--earthshine--casts enough light to make it so. But the scientific explanation seems much less romantic than the image of the old and new Moons embracing to become one.

We drove down the long driveway with the window open, hoping to hear a woodcock or an owl. We didn't hear a thing, but the stars--the billions and billions of stars--were everywhere.

Waxing crescent Moon
holds the old Moon in her arms.
We all seek wholeness.

No comments:

Post a Comment