Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Androgynous moon

There's been a wonderful full moon for the last couple of nights. Right after darkness falls, it hangs low in the sky and appears to be twice its usual size. When it's big like that, when it looks almost close enough to touch, I feel connected to the man in the moon and all the other mythical, mystical creatures that inhabit the night sky.

All my life I've heard about "the man in the moon." Lately, though, I've been listening to a song that gives the moon a decidely feminine persona. I'll post the lyrics for you to read, and if you'd like to hear the version I've been playing over and over, click here.

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress*

See her how she flies
Golden sails across the skies
Close enough to touch
But careful if you try
Though she looks as warm as gold
The moon's a harsh mistress
The moon can be so cold

Once the sun did shine
Good Lord it felt so fine
The moon a phantom rose
Through the mountains and the pine
And then the darkness fell
The moon's a harsh mistress
It's hard to love her well

I fell out of her eyes
I fell out of her heart
I fell down on my face
I tripped and missed my star
I fell and fell alone
The moon's a harsh mistress
The sky is made of stone

The moon's a harsh mistress
She's hard to call your own

*As performed by Joe Cocker
(Written by Jimmy Webb)


  1. I've always thought the moon to be feminine, the sun masculine. That top photo is lovely, the moon lurking in the trees. Thanks for sharing.

  2. In yoga, the moon is considered feminine. I used to have a yogi that taught full moon yoga on the beach. The poses were all focusing on the female strengths, thighs and belly. It was fun to hear the guys, who did so well with the tough warrior poses struggle.

    Velvet, you take wonderful moon shots! It's so difficult. Do you have a tripod??? Holly

  3. That picture is stunning! All five of my kids were born either early or late, depending on the full moon. That made it feel feminine to me.

  4. Looks like the first three commenters agree on the moon's femininity.

    Alison, if you click on that top photo to enlarge it, you see the "man in the moon." The leaves directly in front of the moon form a profile view (facing right) of a man's head, shoulders and chest. He has dark hair, a pointy nose, and is possibly wearing a tux and a bowtie.

    Holly, I checked your site at noon today and discovered you'd posted about the moon, too. "Great minds..."

    I'd LOVE to have a tripod, but I don't. I lean against the house to steady my hands while I try to take a moon photo, but I still end up throwing out a dozen shots for every decent one.

    Kat, that would have been enough to convince me, too.

  5. I forgot to mention that if you want to see someone who REALLY knows how to take photos of the moon, go to Manuel Tendoro's November archive and scroll down to see his moon shots. Expert!

  6. I remember one Christmas when we drove home from church, the moon was so huge-bigger than a house-and yellow, it seemed like you could reach out and touch it. I love to see the moon all year, but I wonder if there are certain times when the moon is closer to us than it is any other time? does anyone know?


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