August red moon is also blue

August moon
Small watercolor sketch of August moon rising over corn field

The moon that rises tonight is the the red moon, the green corn moon, and the full sturgeon moon. Yesterday I made some watercolor sketches to try to capture the images floating through my mind. Those are often the hardest images to catch.

watercolor sketch of moon
Small watercolor sketch of red moon that is also a blue moon

The moon tonight is also a blue moon, which always sounds awfully romantic. That’s a tough color combination: the unearthly green-blue of a summer moon and the glowing red of an August moon (especially if you live in an area hard hit by wildfire).

Watercolor sketch of moon
Red moon 

But my favorite sketch is of the simple red orb floating over our heads in the blue-black sky. I don’t know why the moon holds such fascination, exacts such devotion, and provides such comfort to earthly denizens. Gravity? Magic? Or simply familiarity with a beautiful companion to our blue earth?

Full moon

The Goose in the Moon © 2009 Margaret Sloan

The painting with this post was from a doodle I made after hiking out at the baylands and watching geese fly across an early moon. It’s a small painting, and destined for a friend of mine who’s in need of some magic.

It’s a lovely synchronicity that this last night of our year 2009 there’s a full moon. And this full moon is special: it’s a blue moon, the second in the month. A regular full moon is often a symbol of the peaking of power, clarity, and general psychic hubbub, and  some folks ascribe even more special powers to this bonus full moon.

And this moon’s a triple magic bonus because it will succumb to a partial lunar eclipse (that most of us won’t be able to see, darn it).

According to a 1998 Old Farmer’s Almanac, each moon has an attribute. The December full moon is the Cold or Oak Moon. The January full moon is the “Wolf” moon, “After-Yule” moon, or “Old” moon. But for all the 12 months on my old Almanac calendar, there’s nothing about any geese in the moon.  So I’m going to call this last blue moon in 2009 the “Goose” moon.