Moon Miser

Zion.  I step out of my cabin after a late dinner.  A new moon burnishes the canyon floor. One cliff shadow falls against the next.  The bright moon, rising over the peaks to my back.  A loan tree atop the canyon wall occults the moon, like a spider in the light.  The white teases out the crags in the sandstone and licks the far off vermillion cliff caps.

I’ve discovered I’m a joy miser.  I want certain things in life.  Dreams unrealized.  But I believe I’ll only be given so much.  So when I’m offered something good but unexpected, a “small” miracle like a walk in the moonlight, maybe I turn it down out of a sense of negotiation, believing God provides the moon walk instead of my dream, believing the Universe has only a limited supply of good things.  So I cheat myself out of the little good things, out of the present moment, hoarding a future of big good things that never arrives.  Well no more.  I’m going for a walk in the moonlight.

Mule deer graze in the field in front of my lodge.  Could hear a fawn pull up the long grasses with his teeth.  Light clouds flit by.  Stars rival the moon for apparent magnitude   Wait a minute; are there three Dippers?  I’ve just discovered the Medium Dipper.

I meander along banks of the Virgin River.  The night, its wind, are so mysterious they conspire with a skeletal winter willow; altogether an army of ghosts.  Then it becomes clear in me: all the greatness the world offers, the fame and money and great sex, the television exposure and stock options, represents currency that can’t purchase a walk in the moonlight.  It could purchase the view, I suppose, but not the appreciation.

All the universe’s little items distilled in the moonlight.  The moon is made new each cycle, renewing all things with a first born light.  It scours everything in innocence.  In cool effulgence.

© 2015 by Michael C. Just