Friday, August 13, 2010


I went out to see the Perseids, our local paper having said this is the night and the time. For a wonder, the sky was clear--no overcast, no rain, and it was warm enough for just a light sweater.
The up side of no streetlights, usually not such a good thing, is that you can actually see a LOT of stars.
I sat in a chair, head tipped back, and looked at a star-sprinkled sky for maybe half an hour.
Our cat and dog thought that my sitting out there in the dark was a brilliant idea.
No showers, but I did see several flickers, 3 definite flares, and one meteor arcing across the sky.
When my eyes started playing tricks I stood up and had to grab the chair because my head was reeling.
And this poem's  been running through it.

Stevenson, Robert Louis (1850–1894). A Child’s Garden of Verses and Underwoods. 1913.

 Escape at Bedtime

THE LIGHTS from the parlour and kitchen shone out

Through the blinds and the windows and bars;

And high overhead and all moving about,

There were thousands of millions of stars.

There ne’er were such thousands of leaves on a tree,

Nor of people in church or the Park,

As the crowds of the stars that looked down upon me,

And that glittered and winked in the dark.

The Dog, and the Plough, and the Hunter, and all,

And the star of the sailor, and Mars,

These shone in the sky, and the pail by the wall

Would be half full of water and stars.

They saw me at last, and they chased me with cries,

And they soon had me packed into bed;

But the glory kept shining and bright in my eyes,

And the stars going round in my head.

The Perseids should be visible for several nights--apparently best between midnight and dawn.
Take a look if you get the chance.

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