Sharing a secret of the universe

I would like to see the Aurora Borealis someday.  Of course I would be thrilled to see the great green waves shimmering through the sky overhead, but I would really love to see the green ones mixed with the pink in them,  if I could pick from a menu for viewing activities.  SpaceWeather.Com has a gallery of superb photos of auroras.  They are awesome but I would still like to see the show in person.

When I see some phenomena in sky, I feel like I have been privileged to participate in some secret of the universe.  I’ve watched a lunar eclipse long into a wintry night a few years back and even longer ago I was so excited to watch the appearance of the Hale Bopp comet that when I saw it I ran across the street to see if my neighbor friend Nettie had seen it.  She said she had already seen it and did not seem to share my enthusiasm.

Fourteen years ago I was so stunned to see multi-colored halos around the moon while out walking one evening I felt like knocking on every door I passed and saying, “Hey, look at the moon!”  Eventually I did turn around and walk to the end of my street and stop at Marilyn and Allyn’s house and they did come to the porch and have a gander.

One early evening  just as the sun was setting and I was about to turn onto highway 480 heading west, I was awestruck by brilliant orange-pink clouds that stretched as far as my eyes could see from north to south – and I was shouting in the car (no one else was in the car) about the glory and beauty before me, so privileged to see the site, and so annoyed not to have my camera at hand – I try not to leave home without it now.

Still, no one seems as astonished as I am when I see these things.

Once Upon a Clear and Cloudless Night

Clear and Cloudless,

the black blanket of sky is

a map of constellations.

Above the uppermost tip of the

Big Dipper, the comet shone.

Too big to be mistaken for a star –

with the brilliant trail following

like a bridal train.

Standing spellbound in wonder

gazing at the sight – the feeling of

having shared a secret of the universe.

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