Thursday, December 13, 2007

Star Gazing

Although it's clear outside, there is a lot of moisture in the air. I took the dogs out and looked to admire my beloved Orion. I could only see his belt on my inhalations. When I exhale, the moisture in my breath condenses to form a mini-cloud, blocking my view of the stars.

It's a beautiful night. There are some ground clouds (aka fog) forming, but looking up gives me a clear view.

I still remember my first sight of the Milky Way. I was 18 years old and a freshman in college. A group of us went out to one guy's dad's farm for a hayride. I was a child of suburbia, and I attended a suburban college with all the streetlights suburbia embodies fading the stars. Yes, I knew there were stars above, but I had no concept of the glory of the Milky Way as seen from an Indiana corn (or maybe soybean) field. My childhood horizons were hemmed by trees and mountains, not the limitless flat expanse of northern Indiana.

I had never seen so many stars before, and perhaps I haven't since that night. It was a magical, safe, wondrous night. I leaned back into my dear friend Edge's arms while he talked of the stars and pointed out the many stars and constellations he knew. He wanted more than anything to spend time in the sky as a pilot with those stars to guide him. There were so many stars that it was difficult to see some of the constellations -- was he was pointing to this star or that one?

I shivered with cold. I shivered with awe at the size of the sky and the size of the universe. I shivered with the rightness of my being there right then, a part of the universe. An integral part of the universe, despite being so tiny in the universe. It was me, and I was it, and the stars sang.


Mrs. G. said...

This is just beautiful and perfect. Do you still keep in touch with your star loving friend?

kabbage said...

Sadly, I lost touch with Edge a few years after college. Earlier this year I did an internet search for him, and there is a chance he actually lived in my current city a few years ago. I wish I had known at the time.

He did grow up to be a pilot, though! And if he's retained some of his preferences, he would admire your blonde hair very much, Mrs. G!