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Stars in the Summer Sky

October 11, 2011

Beyond all else, we are given the moon this night, but there’s so much more in the night sky. We aren’t left to only stare at the moon hanging in blackness. We’ve been given a vista of stars, too.

I’ve always admired the stars. They sparkle, adding joy and much variety to life, but they’ve often seemed remote. At the same time, while the moon is undeniably something other, something greater than us, the stars seem at least corporeal. Here’s the secret: we are the stars in each others’ skies.

Sometimes the stars seem closer than others, and sometimes the stars seem unfamiliar– sometimes the sky is different. The moon is still the same, but everything else has changed. These past two summers, my sky changed.
It’s not often you find another star, another person, with whom you can talk without fear. Last summer, I found three. I like to think that they found the same thing in me.

We rejoiced in this discovery. Days filled with the happiness of simple work with them. At night we rejoiced, dancing beneath the moon or enjoying the simple pleasure of conversation. At one point I fell into the trap of feeling romantic feelings towards one of these. It was silly and fleeting, but, in its own way, even that was a joy. How can one help but be overjoyed when enveloped not just in the love of the moon but also of three stars?

That summer ended eventually. They tell me it had to, that such endings are necessary. They tell me that all things must end until all things end. I supposed it make sense: how can creatures meant for the day keep hold of lasting joy during the night? It can come into our possession fleetingly, but such things can’t stay until dawn.
Nevertheless, I thought that the joy could be recaptured. I thought I could secure another glimpse of daybreak, for when three stars come together, the light is great. I went back to live under my new sky for another summer, but the stars are ever-changing.

While I enjoyed once again dancing with one of my stars, I couldn’t any longer with the other two. One wasn’t in that sky any longer; the other was, but she was nothing but a faint shimmering in the distance. She was a meteor I could no longer catch. Inexplicably, unjustifiably, I was no longer one of the stars in her sky. Maybe I never was.

This is our world. We are creatures built for light living in darkness. We can’t keep our eyes on the sky all the time, for then we’ll stumble and end up treading without care, but every time I let my eyes fall back to the Earth and its darkness, I weep, for I now have another vision thanks to the work of the moon.

This is the purpose of the stars: they shed a little light and give a dim reminder of the moon and what it promises. They help us through the darkness. Most of all, they tell us to look back to the moon when the night seems unbearable. The stars aren’t perfect, but they’re better than anything else. They are a good gift.

My meteor, my lost star, I don’t know what happened this summer. I don’t know why we couldn’t continue our dance. Know that I still love you, just as I struggle to love all the stars, but probably, unfortunately, just a bit more. I still petition on your behalf, and when I think about the coming day, part of my imagination remains those nights joy; our nights of joy.

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