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Pink Moon

April 9, 2020

Last night my friend Kathy posted about the wonder of the full moon.  A month ago she was visiting her daughter, helping put her two granddaughters to bed, when the full moon rose.  One at a time, she hoisted each granddaughter, already in her nightgown, onto her shoulders, and walked down to the end of the gravel driveway to marvel at the moon.  Last night, she gazed at the full moon again and reflected on our current quarantine, “that I can’t go and get a little girl to marvel with me,” and reminded us to “Say yes every way you can” to the gifts that each day presents us with.  A friend of hers commented, “Pink moon tonight … beautiful!”

This morning I awoke at 6:00 and noticed an unusual light piercing the translucent west-facing shade in our bedroom.  Remembering Kathy’s post and recognizing the source of that light, I hopped out of bed and soon was pedaling down the Springwater Corridor, heading west toward the full moon hanging in the dawning sky.  It was as big as I can ever remember, and pink—very pink.  This was not the first time I have enjoyed a setting full moon on a morning ride, and it never fails to fill me with a sense of accompaniment by my creator.

The moon spoke:  “I see you, and I see the entire planet you live on.  I see fortunate ones like you, and I see your neighbors sheltering in tents near you.  All around the world, I see people rushing toward emergency rooms with tightness in their chests and fear in their hearts, and I see health care workers heading in to those same hospitals with a commitment to serve, and fear in their hearts, too.  I see you all, and I love and care for every one of you, for you are my children.”

The moon continued:  “I have been watching your planet closely for billions of years now.  I have seen civilizations come and go, and I have seen species come and go, and I have loved you all.  I live in every moment with you, I share in each smile and each tear, I know the depth and urgency of your passions and your fears.  Having seen so much gives me a perspective you can only imagine, but it does not diminish in any way my caring for you and those you love.

“I love that you are following after me as I head west over the horizon.  Soon you won’t be able to see me, but remember that I am there whether you can see me or not.  I will always be speaking my wisdom into your heart and your condition, and I pray that you will be listening for my voice.”

Upon returning home, I learned that “pink moon” refers to the full moon of April, so named for the blooming of ground phlox, one of my father’s favorite flowers.  This year, the pink moon is the largest supermoon of 2020, the closest the moon will come to earth during its full phase.  The pink moon is associated with rebirth and renewal, in keeping with the season; I pray for these things now more than ever.  They say the pink moon, however, is not pink—but that’s my story and I’m sticking with it.

Like many, this season has brought us a unique mix of challenges and blessings.  We faced a family health crisis that necessitated my daughter’s family moving in with us, but navigating this has brought us closer together.  The coronavirus crisis put an end to my chaplaincy work for the time being but extended our new living arrangements, so now I get to share each day with my five-month-old granddaughter.  She is still too young to appreciate the pink moon, but I look forward to the day when I can hoist her onto my shoulders to gaze at the moon, and to tell her of the things the moon spoke to me this morning.

Photo credit – Bruce Alber

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  1. Cheryl Okimoto-Russell permalink

    Loved reading this today Greg. So full of love and hope.
    Thank you.

  2. Christine Glenski permalink

    Beautiful, Greg! Just the most soothing writing I have encountered through this entire time of crisis. “Say yes every way you can” to the gifts that each day presents us with. They are magical opportunities even in our darkest hours. I love this description of the moon watching over us. The imagery is so vivid. I went out to the country to watch the moon rise on Wednesday. Another time I dragged 12 children and grandchildren back out of bed to watch it rise, impatient they had been too impatient waiting for it to appear up over the mountains. The moon does not fail us. And this month, it is pink indeed., at least that’s the story I’m sticking with. But then, your father is my father. 💙

  3. Gail permalink

    Greg and Christine, I love both of your observations and comments! I believe we will all come through this challenging time with more understanding and compassion and that we can learn a valuable lesson from our shared experience. Keep safe and well.

  4. Karla Zimmerman permalink

    Thank you for setting your thoughts in writing. I appreciate them very much. And so delighted that you get to live with your granddaughter.

    Kate and David now share Saturdays, beginning at noon with us. So lovely to have this time together.

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