An overnight in the desert southeast of Boise. I’m snuggled into my nest, engrossed in a book, relishing utter silence and solitude. I glance up from my book and nearly fall over in surprise. The moon was ready but I was not. I grabbed for my camera, which was buried under heaps of miscellany. Then I fumbled in the gathering darkness to maneuver the settings for a moon shot. It was futile. The moon was not waiting, and I was missing her grand entrance in my misguided frenzy. This became an opportunity to employ words rather than pictures, so I’ve given it a whirl.
The western horizon blushes behind a veil of whiskery clouds, its darkened counterpart to the east glowing in response. A crescent pushes up from the gentle swell of eastern sage hills, it rises slowly, infinitesimally, illuminating the length of the ridgeline like a gleaming, silver choker. The crescent transforms to a warmly glowing half circle; then a three-quarter circle; then, hovering as if afraid of cutting ties with the horizon beneath it, the giant orb emerges in all her luminescent glory. Slight abrasions to her surface reveal her depth, her character, her very moonness. The farther from the eastern horizon she travels, the brighter, the more pristine, the less earthy she glows. The shimmering globe continues her levitation, gaining power in her rise; she chases the last remnants of color from the west.
Rain dampened, leathery sage leaves release restorative oils and perfume the crisp night air with an intoxicating fragrance that mingles with dampened dust.
A scattering of brave stars dots the deep, dark bowl of the sky, while the horizon glows 360 with the grace of moon on one side and the memory of sun on the other.
Rising ever so slowly, but in an arrow-straight trajectory, the moon, even as her circumference shrinks and her abrasions fade in the increasing brightness of her being, will soon overwhelm all but a handful of stubborn stars and planets floating above. She appears smaller at her zenith, oh so very far away; and yet, as her size diminishes her luminescence and energy increases, lighting the sage hills and gorges beneath, beckoning autumn bacchanal.
She continues her inexorable chase of cousin sun, up, and over, and down, growing again and tarnishing to a warm glow as she approaches the western horizon. Cousin sun, now nearing the eastern horizon, his warming presence not yet visible, but illuminating the cloud wisps hanging over the hills, he casts his spotlight once again on cousin moon’s abraded face. And night cedes once again to dawn.