Under the shadowed outline of her canopy, the moon's full face blinks down on her. She winks in response, and lies back onto the carpet of pine needle. I watch her with held breath as she raises her hands slowly upward in silent homage to the Empress of the night. The faint ocean’s sigh echoes on my palm and my fingers tingle in remembered suspension. I only just stop myself from joining stereophonically, “ka—losor—isma-a-a-a, ka—losor—isma-a-a-a selene mana” The ancient words “welcome, welcome, moon mother” vibrate, an otherworldly iteration as familiar as a mother’s lullaby. I ex-and-inhale shallow breaths of anticipation. There is a lifetime of silence before the faint antiphony winds it’s way through the branches a second later “ka—losor—isma-a-a-a, ka—losor—isma-a-a-a selene mana” An earthbound star flitters in the distance, a lone celestial infant making it’s way through the trees. Like splitting molecules, one becomes two becomes four until a dozen tiny lights glimmer in the darkness, winding their way towards the girl as she chants out her greeting again. A final, single reply pulls the dimly lit figures to a halt, a human crescent cradling the reclining body. Their shadows elongate toward the still figure on the ground and their statuesque silhouettes shimmer with expectation.
Almost whispered, the girls voice fuses with the night’s murmurings then crests over the wave’s gentle sigh: “—losorisma selene mana… Moon mother. I call you by name to honor your presence among us: Selene, Khonsu, Diana, Bendis, Maou, Luna the sacred heart of all Mothers…”
A solo voice takes the cue and sweeps the women off into a melody that sweeps up and down the scale:
Thy beauty haunts me heart and soul,
Oh, thou fair Moon, so close and bright;
Thy beauty makes me like the child
That cries aloud to own thy light:
The little child that lifts each arm
To press thee to her bosom warm.
Though there are birds that sing this night
With thy white beams across their throats,
Let my deep silence speak for me
More than for them their sweetest notes:
Who worships thee till music fails,
Is greater than thy nightingales.*
*The Moon by William Henry Davies