One summer night when I was young, I stood high on a hill
The steamy August heat had gone; the sky was clear and still
A recent cold front swept away all hint of clouds and haze;
The sky was filled with more stars than I’d seen in all my days.
In front of me a crescent moon was hanging very still;
It slowly dropped behind the trees atop a distant hill.
Despite the distance, every single leaf on every tree
Was silhouetted by that crescent moon for me to see.
I don’t think I had ever seen a sight so fine and rare
As I sat beneath that starry sky and breathed that cool, fresh air
That August night had cast a spell, and I was not immune;
It made me realize how much I’m grateful for the moon.
The moon is always beautiful; an ever-changing light
That grows from just a sliver to a beacon in the night
It’s been there for millennia, and yet it’s still surprising;
It always seems much smaller in the sky than when it’s rising.
And when it goes into eclipse it doesn’t fade away;
You still can see a ghostly moon there, turned from white to gray.
Of course, the moon’s most glorious when shining full and bright,
Illuminating landscapes with a cold and ghostly light
Like a piece of pirate treasure in the sky, a gold doubloon;
It’s just another reason that I’m grateful for the moon.
What’s more, we need the moon; it makes the oceans fall and rise
Which helps create our weather, and our ever-changing skies.
Tides circulate the nutrients that keep the seaweed verdant
And help the ocean’s creatures travel, riding with the current
And all that tidal energy may one day soon provide us
With energy to power homes and light the lights that guide us.
Besides, the lunar gravity brings more than just high tide;
It stabilizes Earth so we don’t wobble side-to-side.
Without the moon the Earth would spin off-axis, helter-skelter;
In summer we might freeze, and in the winter we might swelter.
A planet and its satellite in gravity’s cocoon;
If Earth could speak, I know she’d say she’s grateful for the moon.
Last summer I stood by the ocean, full moon rising slow;
I watched the waves roll in, beneath a dark sky and the moon’s bright glow
An ever-changing, shimmering display of light and sound;
With cool and salty air and open sea for miles around
The shifting, sweet reflection of the moon’s light seemed to me
To be a road of countless sparks stretched out across the sea.
I thought of all the people through the ages who could say
They’d stood upon this sandy shore and seen this grand display….
I thought of how they must have felt about the sight before them;
How it must have raised their tired spirits, helping to restore them
As they observed that light, the brightest jewel where countless stars are strewn;
I’m grateful for each one of them,
But most of all
I’m grateful for the moon.
Copyright 2018 by Christopher Kent. All rights reserved.