By rights, March's full moon should rise when there is no snow, and one doesn't have to wear an Arctic parka to look at it. We (Spencer and I) shivered as we waited for Lady Moon to put in an appearance last night, but there She was a little after eight, lustrous and pearly and a wistful harbinger of the greening season that has yet to put in even a brief appearance.
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 woods are filled with owl songs, migratory birds are returning and trees are budding out. This year there is still a fair bit of snow, and temperatures are in the minus twenties. It will be some time until the weather is mild enough for a proper maple syrup run, until loons return and herons haunt the shoreline of my favorite lake. Not a goose, a sandhill crane or a trumpeter swan has returned. Do I label this post as "winter" or "springtime"? It has to be winter.
As cold it was last evening, springtime is making its way northward, and we were content 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 and every 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 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, 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, Worm Moon.
I am rather fond of Moon of Earth Awakening, Maple Sweetness Moon and Rebirth Moon, but I always think of this as Melanie's Moon in honor of a friend who passed beyond the fields we know a few years ago in March.