|For a season of light and newness|
Anybody stay up late the other night for the celestial show nature staged? Pun intended, I’d say that spectrum almost eclipsed the range of what I try to cover on this paper’s Arts page.
It had all the elements of the fine arts, from the visual to the performance. First there was a black shadow creeping up from the edge of the moon like a classic Hitchcockian villain in an old black-and-white movie. Then the moon’s masterful morphing from bright silvery to dusky red then moody brown, with its craters and textures standing out in strong relief, as if a master hand was wielding the brush. Next, tendrils of fog glided over the lunar face like dancers pirouetting across a stage. Finally the moon re-emerged, whole, silvery, gleaming out of the dark, like a celestial rebirth worthy of great philosophical poetry.
When you think of it, there was transcendence. First of time and space: The last time a total lunar eclipse occurred on the solstice, Queen Elizabeth I was not long dead. That thought made the hundreds of thousands of miles between earth and moon seem even longer but at the same time, it blurred the distance with a common human bond.
And then when you think of the precisely timed dance of vastly different cosmic bodies the size of moon, earth and sun that resulted in this cosmic show, it gives a whole new perspective on reality.
There could be ideas for us down here. First off, in how the everyday can conceal unexpected colors and textures. The moon, up there every night even if we don’t think to look for it, performed a flawless paean to art and science. What does this say about what we humans, gifted with more imagination, potential and diversity than the moon, might be capable of?
We’re more than those spheres of rock or gas; we carry all those colors and textures, for good or ill, within us. What might we become, if we looked at things in even a slightly different light?
It’s a thought for this season of light and newness. Happy holidays all, however you note them and however you plan for the new year.