The Dark Side

Near-full moon means bright evenings, but dark mornings.

Near-full moon means bright evenings, but dark mornings.

Today we tip to the dark side. Tomorrow, night will outstrip day for the first time in six months.

It seems the equinox should be momentous. Autumn should sweep in, chilly and dark, leaving summer behind.

But yesterday, the temperature reached 33 degrees (91F). Today is on track to be even warmer, and tomorrow, the same. Though darkness creeps up on us, the sun has not abandoned us yet.

Still, it is time to remember to appreciate the dark.

This morning, I milked and fed the animals in the dark, as I’ve done for the past month. But before I went back inside and turned on the lights, I paused to appreciate the night sky. The milky way slashed from northern to southern horizon, southern cross glinting in its midst. Pavo, Scorpius, and Lupus were there too—a veritable menagerie of constellations, though truth be told, I can identify only a handful of them without a star chart.

But in the still of early morning, it didn’t matter whether I could find the peacock’s tail in the sky. It was enough to look up and appreciate the vast universe, accessible to us only in the dark.