A panorama of images taken this evening as the Moon wove in and out of clouds. We had a wonderful drenching shower this afternoon. It started with hail, then heavy rain, topped off with a rainbow. And the sun was shining the whole time.
These images sent me digging through my photo archives to pull out all my favorite moon shots from the past year, which show the many faces that Lady Moon puts on during her transits across the sky each month:
A thin crescent at dawn...
Nearly half, again at dawn (taken in Bothell, WA)
A nice crescent, topped by a rosy jet trail
Another crescent, taken from the roof at school
The recent conjunction of the Moon, Venus, and Jupiter--quite a sight!
Full-face, surrounded by a light haze of fog
Waxing gibbous, showing off her seas and craters
A lurid, setting Moon, obscured by fog
A half Moon, obscured by clouds
I love watching the Moon. And when one makes it more of a routine, one sees a lot more, too. Like the first tiny cuticle of the crescent after she emerges from her dark phase and the ominous waning gibbous after her full flush.
This year I bought the Lunaria calendar, which has the Moon's phases for each day, the astrological transits, and other interesting aspects. If you are inclined, you can find them here:
From the back of the calendar:
"The Lunaria is the perfect instrument to help us to realize the powerful effects that the moon, planets and seasons have on us. More aware, we can increase our ability to consider our actions, understand our emotions and plan for the future."
For instance, when the panorama of Moon photos was taken, the Moon was moving out of Cancer and into Leo. For a gardener, this would mean the we were moving from "a fruitful time to a barren one. It will, however, be a good time for pest control! On an emotional level, Cancer is a time of heaviness and sensitivity, while Leo is a time of joyful appreciation of the day, and bold self-confidence." (quote from the calendar).
Whatever your religious or spiritual inclination, the forces of the Moon and other planets exerted on our Earth cannot be denied. The gravitational force of the Moon in particular causes sap in trees to rise and the tides of the sea to ebb and flow.
In general, I just find it rewarding to watch Lady Moon's performance upon the stage of night, observing her changes of costume for each act during the month.
[written while listening to some vintage Rolling Stones, in particular, 2,000 Light Years from Home]