and the moon shines on…
some nights, at the end of some long days, at the end of long stretches of days when the light’s grown dim, gone dark almost, i find myself pulled, like the tide, to the window.
and there she is, mama moon. swollen. certain. shining down and out and pinning shadow to the landscape, the nightscape.
her moonbeams, spilled milk on lakes and woods and even windowsills, turn the nighttime inside out.
i make out things i might otherwise have missed. the glint of gutter where the copper bends, butts up against another sheaf of earth-mined metal, long and narrow, disappearing into darkness.
i might catch the dew, or whatever is the night mist settled on a leaf. i might catch a wisp of cloud, in fine relief against the blue-black of night once it’s cloaked the heavens’ dome.
but mostly, when by day the world is feeling shaky, tipsy-topsy, i look out to find the moon, and there she is, anchor in the murky choppy waters, where she’s been all my nights, so far, and all the world’s as well.
oh, sure she goes up and down in size, like i used to do too. only not with such illumination. mine was done in darkness.
some nights she can barely squeeze out a little wedge of light. but others, like last night, when i needed her, she’s robust, full-waisted. for a moon, she was downright zaftig.
when i first looked up, as i began to pull the shade, so my little one might catch the bedtime drift, i stopped, hard and sudden. called to him to come, check out this moon.
“it’s a cross,” he said.
“sure is,” i answered back, not blinking, not at all, at the shafts of light that reached out, right and left, up and down, from that moon in the middle.
far as i recall, i’ve never seen quite such a moon-cross. never saw before clear channels, bright channels, distinct lines of moonglow, pouring out like that. east and west and north and south, points on a compass lighting up the would-be dark.
hmm, i thought, maybe mama moon knows. maybe she knows we need all the light we can get down here. maybe she’s shut her eyes and she’s squeezing with all her might, bearing down to bust out every molecule of light she’s absorbed from what the day’s wasted.
maybe she knows these hours are dark, darker than we’ve seen in a long long while.
coast to coast and ’round the globe, there’s trouble. and tumult. and even close to home, it’s hard to find a place where the light pours in.
oh there’s wall street, of course. and waking up to news, squawking there from the box beside your bed, news that makes you shudder before your toes get to the cold, hard slabs of oak.
and there’s all the stories and the film clips zipping through the wires. there’s the worries clogging up the computer. there’s tales so odd you consider retreating to your closet floor. where you might stay curled for weeks to come, afraid to death to wake up the morning of november 5 and find the world’s gone stark raving mad.
you meet with friends, out of work and broken-hearted and barely able to swallow the chunks of bread you brought along.
you hear tales of young mamas who’ve been told, just now, that they’ve got weeks or months to live. and you can’t do a damn thing to stop the clock, to bring them, or their children, the time they need. oh, Lord, the time they need.
and in your own home, your own kitchen, you sit and soak up the worries of a boy who feels alone. a boy who aches to find a friend. and you’re just the mama, and short of calling every single kid you ever knew or liked, saying, hey, please, call my kid and ask him maybe to hang out, there is nothing you can do.
so all day, you hold it in. so full your heart, your chest, you think any minute now your ribs might bust. you might start cryin’ and never stop.
but then the night comes. the world goes dark. except for the moon. that one fine orb of light that won’t go out. after all these eons, and all these long long mondays and tuesdays, it still turns on. like a good swiss clock.
count on it.
there she is.
right out the window, where you need her. so close you swear you could twist the latch, heave the frame, and grab a fistful.
she’s what you need. a nightly dose of pure illumination. she’s there to draw you out, and in, both ways at once.
she’s there to remind you, night after night, she shines on all the ones you love, no matter how scattered across this old spinning globe. she is the one whole blanket that holds you, each and every one.
she’s the priestess of the night. drawing out your prayers. pulling you to your knees, if that’s the way you whisper benedictions.
the moon, i think, is God’s unfailing way of sticking close behind. God’s way of reminding, no matter how dark the day, the night light’s always on.
might not always be so bright. but she’s out there. just look up. and count on mama moon to guide you through till dawn.
when one of these mornings, the sun might truly rise.
people, are these days weighing heavy on your heart? what gets you through? where does your light come in?
beautiful, beautiful, what a pure gift from your muse… the moon, I have read no finer tribute to this beacon of lightthe past few nights the moon has caused me to awake in the middle of the night. I did not complain, because how can one complain in the face of such beauty? I love the imagery of women of old who would go off in together to a quiet place during their “moon.” What a gift it is to have this light come down every 28 days to remind us, that yes, in the shedding, in the waxing and waning, new light and life comes
Last night around 3am – seems the whole house had to get up to go to the bathroom. It wasn’t until the dog decided he needed to go out a short time later that I discovered that my backyard was aglow in moonlight. Normally I have to turn on the back light to ensure that my little Champ returns to the house posthaste because if I can’t see him he acts as if he can’t hear me. But the moment I make eye contact with him and call him in, he’ll trot right on in. So I truly did admire the beauty of the moonlight, but I was just as happy to get the dog back in quickly and myself back up the stairs to bed.
well dear mrs bam…the moon always gets a rise out of me. i have been in the backwoods for nearly 2 weeks, maine-ly hiking, kayaking, cheating on my preposting on the blog, and here i come to find you darkened by the day but lightened by the moon, as ever cheery as well ever…except…the beauty you seek will find you as it always does. keep the window open for hope and don’t ya know i have heaps and heaps for you to borrow…peace for now.take care
The thing I like about the moon is I just can’t take it for granted…it is not illuminating my path every night, just some nights. It is sort of like one of my old favorite pieces of jewelry that I don’t wear every day, but when I choose it – well it just fills me up in a special way glow-like way.The moonless night in the country is as dark as dark can be so when the moon does shine and move through the sky, well it does become the perfect symbol of hope, not always apparent, but always there somewhere.
ahh, blessed friends, how fine to find you here this morn. and oh, how i do wish you were just across the table, and i could pour you some of the fine stiff brew i have here. fear not, it’s caffeine. not hops. i went to college in a town where beer was brewed, and ever since, cannot stomach that olfactory memory. anyway, lamcal as you so pointedly put it, it is, i think, the mystery of the moon, and the transcendent power of it that we know, because of the 27 other nights in the cycle, that it is there, even on the dark night when we cannot see it. and therein lies the power of its hope, non? how much in life can we never see, never wrap our hands around, and yet we are invited to believe, to hope. to sense. just last night my dear sweet cat called me out of slumber, to escort him down the stairs, where he leapt out into the milkier milkbath of this waning moon, not quite as bright as just the other night. and so, once again i got to marvel at the constancy and fluidity of that blessed moon. i find myself leaning more and more into the natural world for my hope and my religion, as the noisy clanging everyday eclipses–or tries to anyway–the lifebreath that keeps me steady.bless you each and all. and true, i’ll be checking in to find out about your maine-ly trekkings. i too must get up and out there. the brother i love so much is there, sinking roots, spreading wings, and i must put my soles in the soil he is finding to be so sacred.
You ask if these days are weighing on our hearts? well…….I turn off the radio and the news, and don’t letto much of “it” in. Because that too waxes and wains likethe moon. I do not want to be vexed, don’t ya know.But the window of goodness is always open and thatis the view, I choose to see and let into my home. The world will do what it does, I do not need to wax and wainwith it. There is always beauty and always sadness.consistent, just like the moon. and beware that the bad stuff ,always has a way of capturing ourimaginations and our hearts, quicker than the good stuff. It should be in reverse don’t ya think. I am speaking of the larger things that are happening, and am in no way ignorant of them., but gladness is everywhere, just like the moon, my dear friend , it goes where ever I go and that is what I most loveabout her.
oh, lordy, emb, you are a wise wise one……i love the way you spell that out. take heart in it. it’s why i suppose we build houses with walls and windows. the walls keep out what might whip us, or burn us or freeze us, if we had too much of it, unsheltered. but the windows let in light and air, and a place to eye the moon and stars and dawn and dusk and sunsets, there between the trees. since i see you, em, as one enshrined in yellow glow, since you embody the words you write, they carry so much more weight. i think that i will try to subscribe to your school just a bit more than i do. to not feel so weighed down by the dark clouds and big bad stories on the news. i like the way you tie the waxing and waning of bad news and earth-shaking news to the eternal ebb and flow of moon and tide. it is a fundamental, and we have the buoyancy to float the waves…..thanks for pullin up, darlin. thanks much.