Dogs barking as usual. Traffic sounds whooshing through the pines like fake wind.
Suddenly my neighbor drives up and, headlights ruining my exclusive and private affair, parks his truck in his driveway-- thereby illuminating me in the back yard, his engine still running. He just sits there in the car, headlights still on me like an eclipse of the sun, oblivious to that which I am looking heavenly toward.
Of course he doesn't get out to watch Nature's rare offer. After siting there a while he'll just shut down the car, grab his keys and run with them jingling into the night air, and duck into the incandescent security of modern man (called a house), forgetting his roots like everyone else.
Oblivious to the show. Like so many people in these trying times.
As I gaze into the now dull red sphere, I wonder how much is happening on this rock beneath it at this very moment. Death, for one thing. War. Pain. Suffering. But good things too, like new babies and teenage love. I call some friends to tell them to go outside but they are all either busy or not answering.
Oh well, more for me.
Better than any TV show, Netflix rental, or even neighborly affair is this drama unfolding above me in the sky as I write these words. A total lunar eclipse. The last one now 'till 2010 apparently. I just came in from watching theater of the sky's ballet movement, and it was the best SciFi ever. Even the passing clouds were in on it. As I gazed into blackness, a ruddy disk whose previous performances spawned so many archetypal stories throughout history, was beatifically bookended by Saturn and Regulus.
This is special sky tonight!
Regulus is Latin for 'prince' or 'little king'. The Greek variant Basiliscus is also used. It is known as Qalb Al Asad, from the Arabic قلب لأسد or Qalb[u] Al-´asad, meaning 'the heart of the lion'. This phrase is sometimes approximated as Kabelaced and translates into Latin as Cor Leonis. It is known in Chinese as ??十四, the Fourteenth Star of Xuanyuan, the Yellow Emperor. In Hindu Astronomy, Regulus corresponds to the Nakshatra Magha. -- wikipedia
Night winter full moon brightness overtaken by a chance alignment in heaven.
If you think about it, all that orbiting going on up there night and day ... we are all totally oblivious to the wonder of it. Motion we do not feel: The sun is busy moving across the sky. The moon too. Every day. And night, which is really day somewhere else. The stars seem to move around. And then once in a while it all lines up. Eh, but nobody watches any more. In fact, in some great cosmic mockery, people all look at things CALLED watches instead. Hehehe.
The Earth's orbit and the moon's -- these are ellipses of routine. And yet, in this rare aligning of gods in the Great Empty Space, the Hidden Mover plays his Great Show in the Sky with the very light and shadow on which we build "good" and "evil." From Out There. All the full moons you have ever seen mean the sun is simply out of your human view now, yet shining on some other part of the globe while you are in darkness, yet still warming the closely distant face of the moon as well.
The benevolent Light.
But not tonight. Not now. How her face is Red! Its shimmering has been blocked and reddened for a while by something called Chance. We call it that, but I wonder if it is all that random. Alignment of three bodies is surely a plane, right? And there again the joke - people will gaze upward at a plane. Mostly, because it makes noise.
If only this eclipse was noisy, I think to myself. Maybe more folks would really stop for a minute, crane their necks skyward, and look out into the eternal moment rather than to their past or tomorrow, and ponder the greatness of it all.
It could do us all a bit of good.