Monday, October 22, 2007


A clear night with the moonset a bit after two meant excellent conditions for watching this year's Orionids shower. Wrapped in a yellow sleeping bag, yr. correspondent lay on a slight rise by the bay at four thirty in the morning & confirmed the experts' assertion that meteors would shoot across the sky at a rate of twenty to fifty an hour. Anyone observering last night did not have to wait long in between appearances: once, two meteors headed in different directions burned up simultaneously; another time, three streaks of brief light in less than a minute. Sirius was so bright it seemed as though someone had left on a naked bulb in a bedroom, but there was no chance of asking for it to be turned off. The Big Dipper stood on its handle, the magician who commanded it to defy gravity hidden offstage. Only the rhythmic sounds of crickets & wavelets interrupted the calm until the night train in the distance sent out horn calls as it headed into town.

The gorgeous stars are, however, indifferent to our lives. It's up to us to care for each other.


Blogger A Kite Rises said...

The gorgeous stars are indeed indifferent to us and, very sadly, many humans are indifferent to the stars which are obliterated by city light and modern life light pollution. I heard, with not a small flurry of joy, on a recent podcast, that there is a growing movement in favour of reducing this pollution and returning to peoples lives the astonishing beauty of a true night sky. By the way, I am also SO envious of your night meteor watching, lucky you! (beautifully written piece too)

October 22, 2007 at 2:51 PM  
Blogger kookaburra said...

Hello, kite--

Thanks for checking in--you've got some beautiful photos on your site lately, by the way. Also, what is the name (if any) of the movement you mentioned to improve skywatching? I'm all for it.

October 24, 2007 at 12:06 PM  
Blogger A Kite Rises said...

Will check up on this for you Kookaburra, it's a podcast I listened to about 2 weeks ago and I still have it on the iPod. I will get the link for the radio station too....

October 26, 2007 at 5:29 PM  
Blogger A Kite Rises said...

Hey Kookaburra. Go here:
Scroll down to the broadcast dated 27 September 2007, that's the one about night lights etc.
The movement is called "The Campaign for Dark Skies". Type this in as a Google search and you'll see loads of links.

October 27, 2007 at 12:17 PM  
Blogger kookaburra said...

Awfully good of you to follow up on this-thanks. Oh, & thanks for being the first (perhaps the only?) reader to invent a narrative for those old photos.

October 27, 2007 at 5:31 PM  
Blogger A Kite Rises said...

:) I have been meaning to ask you for ages: what does your blog name mean and where does it comes from? It sounds so poetic.

October 28, 2007 at 2:07 PM  

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