Creation and perpetuation keep surging forward under the inconstant moon. As we root the viscous waters of the flow of time, the moon is escort. Our destinies are scattered to the antipodes or just right around here someplace.
By moonlight, her hands, sure and skillful, are the best in all the land for butchering pigs. And later, in some ritual, a swing-chain held lightly in those same fair hands, she waves a censor, and incense dances up in twisted moonlit wreaths of fragrant smoke.
O land of Empire, art and love
What is it that you show me?
A sky for Gods to tread, above,
A floor for pigs below me!
O in all place and shape and kind
Beyond all thought and thinking,
The graceful with the foul combined,
The stately with the stinking!
Arthur Hugh Clough (1819-1861). Resignation — to Faustus”
The moon’s wordless cycles are explanations – a trundle of narrative, prophecy and likely outcomes. By its cycles we plan when to plant or sow. We reckon the best days to castrate farm animals or leave an infant at the monastery door.
We can find our way by moonlight. In luminescence we can learn when to fight or flee, when to sacrifice a pig, or when relinquishing ourselves is the better mend.
- “Resignation — to Faustus” by Arthur Hugh Clough