Thursday, September 07, 2017

The Harvest Moon of Seprember

September's moon is my favorite in the whole turning year.  It is also (above all others), the one I can't describe or take a good photo of, no matter how extensive my preparations and meticulous my labors.  Every year, I potter off to a good vantage point, set up camera, telescope and tripod, check my settings and wait patiently for night to fall. The moon rises, and I stand breathless in the darkness, trying to capture her magnificence with my lens, grasping a scant handful of inadequate words to describe the most beautiful moon of the year.  Bearing witness to this month's full moon is a personal seasonal rite, and if I had to brew up a name of my own for it, that name would be "Hallelujah Moon".

It is something of a cosmic joke, this business of standing outside after dark and taking photo after photo of every full moon but never a good one. Well, here we are again, another glorious Harvest Moon has just gone by, and another folder of mediocre images has been captured.  It brings to mind the Zen teaching tale in which a monk on his deathbed was asked to describe his life, and he replied blithely, "just one mistake after another..."

In the greater scheme of things, it doesn't matter how my efforts turned out - it was being there that mattered.  I was happy to be around for another harvest moon, and I hope to be around for many more. Lady Moon rose t the appointed hour, and we (Himself, Beau and I) were out in the darkness watching her do her thing.  As we packed up our stuff, we couldn't help thinking that such magnificence deserved a gesture of some kind, a chorus, a chant or a benediction - something grander and more luminous than rickety bows and contented sighs.

We also know this moon as the:  Acorn Bread Moon, Acorns Gathered Moon, All Ripe Moon, Aster Moon, Autumn Moon, Barley Moon, Between Harvest Moon, Blood Berry Moon, Eating Indian Corn Moon, Black Calf Moon, Calf Grows Hair Moon, Chrysanthemum Moon, Corn Moon, Corn Maker Moon, Dancing Moon, Deer Paw the Earth Moon, Dog Salmon Return to Earth Moon, Elderberry Moon, Drying Grass Moon, Fruit Moon, Hay Cutting Moon, Her Acorns Moon, Holy Moon, Hulling Corn Moon, Index-finger Moon, Leaf Fall Moon, Leaf Yellow Moon, Leaves Changing Color Moon, Little Chestnut Moon, Maize Moon, Mallow Blossom Moon, Moon of Falling Leaves, Moon of First Frost, Moon of Full Harvest, Moon of Much Freshness, Moon When the Leaves Fall, Moon of Plenty, Moon When the Corn Is Taken in, Moon When the Plums Are Scarlet, Moon When Deer Paw the Earth, Moon When Calves Grow Hair, Moon When Everything Ripens and Corn Is Harvested, Moose Moon, Morning Glory Moon, Mulberry Moon, Nut Moon, Papaw Moon, Rice Moon, Rudbeckia Moon, Seed Moon, Shining Leaf Moon, Silky Oak Moon, Singing Moon, Soaproot Dug For Fish Poison Moon, Sturgeon Moon, Wavy or Snow Goose Moon, Wine Moon, Wood Moon, Yellow Leaf Moon.

3 comments:

Barbara Rogers said...

Thanks, she woke me up several days before, shining in the window. I missed seeing her rise, since there are so many trees, but I howled, figuratively of course, when I saw her pretty bright face.

Mystic Meandering said...

We have a Blood Red Moon here because of all the haze from several forest fires burning in the Northwestern US, and I wasn't able to capture it with my camera. :( I'm sure you know how I feel about your photos, Cate - they are always exquisite. Such detail in this moon shot! I really like this sentence: "In the greater scheme of things, it doesn't matter how my efforts turned out - it was being there that mattered." Indeed...

Kay G. said...

Just one mistake after another...that's funny but sad too. Love the full moon, and you right, the one now is gorgeous.