By rights, March's full moon should be rising when skies are clear, there is no snow, and one does not have to don a parka to see it. Last evening, we shivered as we waited for Lady Moon to put in an appearance, but heavy cloud veiled the heavens, and no moon could be seen. For all that, we were happy because the geese are coming home as are larks, turkey vultures, various hawks, starlings, robins and other songbirds. For a few minutes yesterday, the old crabapple tree in the garden played host to a jubilant throng of waxwings, and it made our hearts glad to see them.
Ostara (or the Vernal Equinox) is only a few days away, light and darkness hovering in perfect balance and the earth awakening slowly from her long winter sleep. This month's moon is often called the Moon of Awakening by northern indigenous cultures because it usually rises when the maple syrup season is in full swing, when the woodland is full of Saw-whet Owl songs, migratory birds are returning, and trees everywhere are budding out. I say usually, because this year there is still a fair amount of snow about, and temperatures are a bit colder than they normally are. The maple syrup season is just starting, and it will be many weeks before I hear loons calling across the lake or watch herons along the shore at sunset.
Whatever the weather last evening, I couldn't help thinking that springtime is making its way northward, however slowly. A flock of returning Canada geese were winging their way down to the river, and they were silhouetted against clouds rather than the moon, but that was quite all right. I was contented with things just as they were. In my eldering years, I am (perhaps) learning a little patience and can wait for warmer nights and other full moons. Every night, albeit cloudy, and every lustrous moon is a gift.
We also know this moon as the: Alder Moon, Big Famine Moon, Big Winds Moon, Blossoming Out Moon, Bud Moon, Buffalo Dropping Their Calves Moon, Catching Fish Moon, Chaste Moon, Cherry Blossom Moon, Cold’s End Moon, Crow Moon, Crust Moon, Daffodil Moon, Death Moon, Deer Moon, Eagle Moon, Goose Moon, Green Moon, Growth Begins Moon, Hard Crust on the Snow Moon, Hertha's Moon, Hyacinth Moon, Lenten Moon, Little Frog Moon, Little Sand Storm Moon, Little Spring Moon, Lizard Moon, Long Days Moon, Maple Sweetness Moon, Middle Finger Moon, Moon of Earth Awakening, Moon of Opening Hands, Moon of the Crane, Moon of the Snowblind, Moon of the Whispering Wind, Moon of Winds, Moon When Buffalo Cows Drop Their Calves, Moon When Eyes Are Sore from Bright Snow, Moon When the Leaves Break Forth, Moon When the Geese Return, Moose Hunter Moon, Much Lateness Moon, Ogroni Moon, Plow Moon, Rebirth Moon, Renewal Moon, Sap Moon, Seed Moon, Sleepy Moon, Snow Blind Moon, Snow Crust Moon, Snowshoe Breaking Moon, Storm Moon, Strawberry Moon, Sucker Fishing Moon, Sugar Making Moon, Trail Sitting Moon, Tree Peony Moon, Violet Moon, Water Stands in the Ponds Moon, Wind Strong Moon, Windy Moon and Worm Moon.
I am rather fond of Moon of Earth Awakening, Maple Sweetness Moon and Rebirth Moon