Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Feeling Lunar

The dates of the Jewish holidays are based on a lunar calendar. And as "we" are currently in the midst of the Days of Awe (see previous post), I have been particularly aware of the moon. This doesn't happen to me every year, but this year, it has. 
     Rosh Hashanah occurs at the new moon (because, I suppose, it's the start of the new year). Makes sense.
Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, which begins this Friday night and is the day on which the Book of Life and Death is written and sealed (or something along those lines; "who shall live and who shall die"), occurs at the half moon.
That ends the Days of Awe, but coming right up is Sukkot (or, as I used to call it Succos), the harvest festival, or the festival of booths, which occurs at the full moon.
In the most embarrassing, humiliating, regretable error in my novel, I wrote that Succos is a spring holiday. My friend Laura pointed the error out to me after the book was published (eternally grateful, Laura), and it has been corrected in the paperback. I cannot for the life of me figure out how I managed to make such an error, but my only excuse is that there are so many pieces and levels to a novel that "something's got to give."
     Which leads me to the next phase of this post, which is that in all this lunar immersion (have you actually looked at the moon lately? If not, please do so tonight, as it has been quite an alluring presence), I have been thinking of and singing to myself all the moon songs I can think of. "Fly Me to the Moon." And "It's Only a Paper Moon." And "It Must Have Been Moon Glow." And "Moon Over Miami." And "Moon Dance." And  "How High the Moon." I'm sure there are others I haven't thought or heard of, and if I did a Google search, I'd have multiples in minutes. But, please, if you have others to suggest, step up and do so.
    To end, here is a lunar image of great merit. I tried to find the person to credit for this (and others to be found at the website) but couldn't actually find a person. So thank you, imaginative lunar visionary. Thank you.

11 comments:

rasirds@cox.net said...

I have it on good reference that the religious police will not come after you for changing the season of Succos. Maybe you were thinking about Purim since it's also an "eat" holiday.

Googling "Moon" songs is cheating. My personal favorite is "I'm in The Moon for Love."

Cheers!

Susan Messer said...

Well, that's a relief about the religious police and being off the hook. Phew. I probably was thinking of Purim. The two do have some things in common--perhaps lesser holidays but tied seasonally with one of the big ones (Purim with Pesach [spring]; Succos with Yom Kippur [fall]). Oh, well.

On my walk today thought of "Shine on Harvest Moon."

rasirds@cox.net said...

I'm a music nerd, so a number of Moon songs came to mind. Must mention a moon song my mother sang to me, "By The Light of The Silvery Moon."

I did Google a couple of sites. Amazing what came up. Worth looking.

Thanks for some fun moments!

Susan Messer said...

Oh yes, of course, I know that one. Am humming it to myself right now. Makes me think of a song my mother used to sing--not a moon song, but related: "Beautiful Dreamer."

rasirds@cox.net said...

Ah, Beautiful dreamer wake unto me, starlight and dew drops are waiting for thee....

"Sweet Peggy O'Neil.....

Just don't ask me what I did yesterday!

lonely teenager said...

Bloo-ooo Moon; You left me standing alone; without a dream in my heart; without a love of my own. . .

Susan Messer said...

Oh, yes, of course. That's a great one. I'm singing already. Thanks, lonely teenager.

The Four of Us said...

The moon by day follows our youngest --it is a normal occurrence to hear her shout, "look" (pointing) "day moon!"

The moon song that I hear "Moon Over the Ruined Castle" Rentaro Taki --oldest daughter learned to play it on the flute this winter, oh do I know that one!!

Susan Messer said...

Day moons. Yes, I forgot about those, Four. Thanks for the reminder. Never really understood how/why that happens sometimes but not others. Also, completely understand how those music lesson pieces make their way into the deep strata of the mind. And now I've thought of two (three) more moon songs: "Blue Moon of Kentucky" and "Moon Shadow." And "Moon River."

Jim Poznak said...

Don't forget books about the moon. We used to read "The Nightgown of the Sullen Moon" to our daughter. ("The moon's promises, what are they worth?". Turns, out, not much.) And Jules Verne, "From the Earth to the Moon", and its sequel, "Around the Moon".

Susan Messer said...

"The moons promises, what are they worth?"

A beautiful line if ever one was written . . . thanks for the reminder.

Remember that play we saw, based on a Calvino story, with people climbing all over the face of the moon? That was wonderful.

I'm also remember that someone once told me that if you cover yourself with gin and go outside at night, you can get a moon tan. Anyone ever tried that?