The Night We Chased The Moon.

Clouds move in, threatening to take out the moon on the one night of the year when every photographer prays for that lifetime shot.

My husband and I chased that elusive shot and didn’t get it. By the time we arrived at what we thought was that perfect spot, the moon was already riding high in the sky. The air felt crisp – I could feel different layers of chill swirling around in the darkness near my feet. It’s May, so how was that possible?

May in this part of New York feels like the end of February or early March other places.

We stood at the top of a hill overlooking what had been a farmer’s field. That field had been reborn into a park for the benefit of the town and the flatness of it rolled out into darkness. At its edge, cars kept up a steady hum on the paved road that used to be a drive  in the country. It’s been a part of the suburban sprawl for over 25 years, counting school buses as a steady part of its trade ever since the high school was built on a large tract of land sold to the town by that same farmer.

West of where we stood, on the other side of the city of Rochester, a friend of mine was chasing that same moon for her perfect shot. She didn’t think she captured it, but I think she did.

And, since her photo was so much better than any that we took, I asked if I could use it. Because for some reason that I didn’t stop to question, I wanted that moon shot.

Did you ever want something like that? Something that didn’t have a rhyme or a reason attached to it – something that pulled from your gut – spoke to you from that place where words step aside letting pure emotion influence your actions?

Children live in that place much better than adults. Their life experiences stretch endlessly towards the horizon that they can’t see. For them, time is infinite.

And, the moon?

Pretend that you’re six years old again when the whole world is so hugely big that walking across the street is like standing on the beach looking out at the ocean.  How can you possibly get to the other side of that?

Holding hands is the safe way to cross over. Which you learn when you’re six.

Once you’ve learned that, those infinite spaces become less so. Until you come to the next infinite space. Which might be nursery school, or kindergarten. Riding the school bus for the very first time … by yourself.

Each time you get to the other side, the spaces waiting for you are never as vast as what you left behind. Until you let go of those hands that guided you when you were so very small – that very first time when you step out all by yourself …

and, there you are: standing on that beach again, looking out at the ocean, asking yourself how you can possibly get to the other side.  If it’s dark, and the moon is slowly rising, you may feel something deep inside you – something that pulls from your gut – that comes from that place where there are no words.

Where there’s a shimmer of moonlight on the water’s surface and the sky is so achingly clear that nothing else matters.

Photo credit: Honey DeLapa of Honey DeLapa Photography.    [gplus count=”true” size=”Medium” ]






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