For all of my adult life, Cat Steven’s song, I’m Being Followed by a Moon Shadow, has played in my head based on a lunar schedule. As the moon waxes, I hear a barely audible humming. The humming builds to a crescendo and I am likely to break into verse when the moon has risen full and bright overhead.
The moon was full last night. Its shadows were cast by the sun’s reflected light on its dark face. Elongated shadows danced on the ground as the wind bent the trees. Over time, I have read up on the moon because it fascinates me as it has fascinated mankind through out the ages. For instance, when trying to discern if the moon is waxing or waning, the following nuemonic device is helpful..
L-E-ft hand curve = D-E-creasing
R-I-ght hand curve = I-ncreasing
Using the curve of the the hand from pointer finger to thumb, if the Moon’s crescent fits the curve of the L-E-ft hand, than it is D-E-creasing. If the crescent fits the R-I-ght hand, then it is -I-ncreasing.
My mother would use the phrase “once in a blue moon,” frequently. When I finally looked it up, I was surprised to learn that a blue moon occurs every 2 1/2 years; it is the
phrase used to describe the second of two full moons in the same month. The lunar cycle is 27.3217 days and, as a result, a blue moon is the result of a reliable mathematical probability.
The Old Farmer’s Almanac was kept in my my parents’ bathroom when I was growing up. I would love to read about the many kinds of moons and how to use them to manage the seasonality of nature. It has always been my aspiration to right a novella consisting of twelve chapters that would correspond with our many moons:
Full Wolf Moon
Full Snow Moon
Full Worm Moon.
Full Pink Moon
Full Flower Moon
Full Strawberry Moon
Full Buck Moon
Full Harvest Moon
Full Hunter’s Moon
Full Beaver Moon
Full Long Nights Moon
I have yet to write the novella, but I can claim a first-hand knowledge, an intimate viewing of all twelve moons. Under their pale light, I have danced, cried, prayed and loved. The moons have served as silent witness to the days of my life.
Mother Goose memorialized the special allure the moon has for boys and girls everywhere.
Boys and girls, come out to play.
The moon doth shine as bright as day!
Leave your supper and leave your sleep,
And come with your playfellows into the street.
Come with a whistle,
Come with a call,
Come with a good will, or not at all.
Lest the moon hide its face with snow or rain or fog or clouds, I can be assured that another full moon will bring light to illuminate our dark nights.