I watched the moon go down in pieces this morning.|
I mean, in isolated moments.
First, it startled me
Full and bright against an already opalescent sky
Framed by the trees that line the first cross street
Along my short path to the bus stop
As I glanced west to watch for traffic.
There it was, unexpected, sudden,
Imminent as a locomotive's headlight.
My heart leaped before the scene resolved
Itself into some kind of calm reality:
The full moon far
But huge, hovering,
A focused orb
Above mountains minimized by nearer scenery
And not yet touched by sun.
I turned the other way, toward the street, Decatur,
And walked and turned that corner too
By guardian palms
To where the bus stop huddles
A bench beneath a wall
Sheltered under branches bearing leaves
And sometimes bird call—
Certainly the bench bears their insignia
As well as a seat-back promoting some casino.
I stand to wait
Still thrilled, alive with wonder
No one to share it with—
Certainly not the dour lady
Wrapped in dark with hostile eyes
Who shares my waiting
Nor the young Spanish fellow
Reserved in his own morning thoughts
Who arrives just before the bus.
I resolve to tell Joy-Lynd when I see her next.
Then shrug a little, knowing by the time I do
The thrill of sharing will have lost its flavor,
The moment gone.
Indeed, that moment dwindles as the bus
Loaded with aliens: children
Bound for schools along the way
Rumbles down Decatur.
Crossing above the freeway
I glimpse the moon once more
Distinctly closer to the mountains' edges
Now lighter, fading in the new-rising sun
Melding into the day as other matters frame the world.
After the bus takes its Meadows Mall digression
The moon is gone
Set into oblivion for another time.
We know it will rise again, soon after sunset,
But we know it with the kind of faith
That makes clocks run.
And the bus rumbles on
To its own rendezvous
With the patterned schedules of the daily grind.
As the bus jostles down Decatur
And later, waiting for its sister at the Charleston stop,
I scribble notes in hopes
That I may later recapture some of that moment
Ross Chamberlain—10/16/97 and 12/27/97