Moon and Sun

The rain fell heavy last night, a sudden storm which ambushed the valley with all its violence. I was up before dawn, walking in the dark and fog, feeding the chickens. Mist drifted across the beam of my head lamp, reducing the world to the space in front of me, wrapping the yard in mystery. Then from the corner of my vision I saw the moon, first a flash of light, low against the horizon. I turned to look.

I caught the moon in the moment of its exit, framed against the tree decked hill. Two trees stood in stark black relief against the pale orb, a pine and leafless skeleton. In an image it captured night ending. Hill and forest before the white light, the wild open world untroubled by the dawning concerns of a new day soon coming. The night and the wild were out there, away from it all.

I wanted to pause time, stop the picture, think and savor. But time does not stop. I moved for a different angle. The moon sets with surprising swiftness. By the time I came round the house only a sliver of the moon remained above the horizon, then it was gone.

Night goes and day comes. The first part of my journey to work takes me over a ribboning wave of hills before I reach the river valley which will take me the rest of the way. I crest one of the hills through the rock divide and dawn opens before me in a crest of successive hills. The new birthed sun peaks from behind a cloud in its golden effulgence. It is the inverse of what I saw less than two hours ago, and yet the same. A world wild and beautiful and not subject to man’s laws or his small ideas. They are hints of a better life.

Then I reach the river valley, and a short time later almost hit a deer loitering in the middle of the road. A few miles further and I almost hit a turkey. The sublime and the absurd in one morning

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