THE MOON IS UP
A MIDNIGHT REFLECTION
That was the night my brother said, ‘The moon is up,’ and I straightway stepped out of the house onto a path so deep with frost, that as I walked towards the gate, I left dark footprints behind me. Heading over the paddock, I could hear little crunching murmurs of the frozen blades of grass beneath my feet.
Then down to the river which seemed to be in good humour, laughing and chuckling. This was the river I sat beside years and years ago when I was a girl, only a long way further down its length to where it opened into a wide stretch of water. I sat on the grass with an armful of bluebells for my mother and watched that river.
This night, I remembered how I had made up the story of the river making the moon by spinning together the little gleaming fish until the circle was going so fast, it flew into the air and shone over the world and the moon was up.
Now I went along the light flecked river bank to the bridge where the rough stones pulled at my skin, their intense cold making me glad to be out in the icy air. Out, then, and on to the bare field in front of me, bare of everything but frost, earth and stone, slipping and sliding on the long, pale grass to the old cattle trough caught in the middle of the hedgerow that stood between the field and the river.
Sitting on the cold, grey rim, touching the frozen water that held the moon in its milky surface, running my fingers over the quivering, willing reflection until I could no longer feel them, I was part of this great silent loveliness, beauty and peace celebrating the darkness .
Over the fields I heard the faint sound of a dog barking somewhere in the next village, the fretful whispering of a few dead leaves hanging in the trees as the wind sighed through the darkness and the sudden rustling of the outside cat following me but never coming close enough to touch.
It was time to go home and the moon let me go, watching me walk over the glittering earth, across the frosted and freezing field.
The moon was up and the whole world shone.
©2019 Gwen Grant