Saw the merest wisp of the sickle crone moon low in the sunrise-pink sky around 8 this morning – crescent so delicate it could melt away in a moment; just a glimpse of her back as she slips out the door.
The sun still had a ways to climb before breaking the horizon on this solstice weekend.
Moon and sun meeting at the darkest end of their cycles.
A perfect weekend to enjoy the gifts of the darkness – healing rest, quiet contemplation, stillness – a peacefully introspective time.
On a mellow evening in September, I was coming from the garden with a heavy basket of apples which I had been gathering. It had gotten dusk, and the moon looked over the high wall of the court, causing undefined shadows to lurk in the corners of numerous projecting portions of the building. I set my burden on the house steps by the kitchen door, and lingered to rest, and draw in a few more breaths of the soft, sweet air; my eyes were on the moon, and my back to the entrance, when I heard a voice behind me say– “Nelly, is that you?”
A wonderful moon! Gateway to Autumn, easing us in slowly, deliciously…
It began with the first inklings of summer’s end:
Two bright yellow jewels in the green grass – the first fallen leaves.
Six geese making their pilgrim way across dusk-darkening sky at 9pm.
It shines brightly now on comfortably cool nighttimes; darkness falling ever-earlier.
Mornings are moonless at this time: sunrise presides over crisp morning walks,
under bright clear skies trailing high clouds that capture ever-shifting colours.
Elm trees presenting a single, stark, yellow-clustered branch among the summer-green.
And it will end with the autumnal equinox, ushering out Summer.
Several years ago I began incorporating the moon cycle into my lifestyle. I take care to notice when the moon is full and when it is dark, and give it concrete meaning in my life by slightly altering my diet on those days. This involved depending on a moon calendar until two dogs became a part of my life – now I can’t help but notice this heavenly body slipping in and out through the mornings and evenings!
I feast at the full moon and do a fast of sorts at the dark moon. I explore the symbolism and energy that people have found meaningful in these rhythms and I develop personal meaning for myself.
The moon cycle is a reminder for me that fluctuation is a natural part of life. Sometimes things go smoothly, sometimes life is painful or disappointing. Sometimes health is good, sometimes health is troublesome. Sometimes it’s easy to be happy, sometimes sadness overwhelms.
At the full moon, I feast by adding cream and sugar to my afternoon coffee, enjoying a glass of wine at supper, buying a bakery treat for dessert. As I indulge I say: “Sometimes life is sweet.”
At the dark moon, I often fast from sugar and treats, drinking black coffee, eating plain food, no alcohol. As I deprive I say: “Sometimes life is bitter.”
These ritual observances help to ground my life experience in an understanding of change and cycles – life feels good now: enjoy, and be ok with the knowledge that it isn’t always like this; life hurts now: this is a natural part of existence; it doesn’t feel this way forever.
In my life, this moon is the Fall Jacket Moon, the Darkening Morning Dog-Walks Moon, the Flashlight in the Pocket Moon (for said am dog-walks), and the Alarm Clock in the Dark Moon. It is the First Frost Moon, the Birds Flocking Moon, the Geese V Moon, the Leaf Turning Moon, and the Fall Projects Moon.
Beautiful and bitter-sweet seasonal signs this month – some of my favourites!