Crowz Nest

Because it's time... as it was once before.

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Location: Port Murray, NJ

I'm a bit old to be starting out in life again, but that's where I am. Sadly. Or gladly. It's where I am. Come along. Watch the fun. Inch by inch, row by row, gonna make this garden grow.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Luna magic

I have a couple of other blog entries dancing around in my brain that I just haven't gotten around to writing. There was that special morning at the foo-foo spa, a luxury I afforded myself while my car was being worked on and there was nothing else to do while I waited. And a wonderful birthday I've completely elided over, not because it wasn't the completely wonderful day that it was, but I mean really, do we still have to count every single year? And there was the great day at Citifield with my brother, marred by a stinky performance by our team, but marked by a most unlikely encounter with an acquaintance of his. Some of this was sublime, some of it ridiculous, but I simply haven't had the time to chronicle every single event of the spring.

The last two nights an unexpected visitor outside my back door has slowed me down, and begs mention here. Every night, as I prepare to go to bed, I let the dogs out for "last outs" while I ready the house for the night. I go down and make sure the outside light is turned off, and that the kitchen door is locked. I check to be certain that Duncan, my rat, has food and water for his nocturnal bumping-in-the-night. I go up and check on my birds, making sure that Dover, my cockatiel, isn't in a draft, that Kiwi and Ziggy are tucked in, and that everyone has fresh water. I wash my face and brush my teeth, set out clothes for the morning and put on my pajamas. And then I return to the living room and open the back door to call the dogs back in.

Last night, when I opened the back door, something fairly large hit the screen, bounced off, and flew away in a swooping circle. I could hear its wings, quite audible and papery as it flew. It arced around, and returned to the door, and then it hit the light and fluttered to the ground just as the dogs came cantering up. Hudson came inside without noticing it, but it rose into the air about a yard, making a tight spiral, the flapping of its wings quite loud, just as Crow arrived. She moved to investigate it, but as it fluttered back to the ground, I asked her to leave it alone and she came inside. I stepped out and bent to take a closer look at our visitor, and as I did so, once again it rose into the air, heading toward the spotlight.

It bumped up against the light quite hard a couple of times, knocking itself back, flying a drunken route around it. Then, it circled my head, and finally, surprisingly, came to a landing on my right forearm. Spectacular. It had long, fuzzy feelers up front, and two long tails behind, which scissored slightly when it landed. Its little feet tickled as it walked down my arm toward my hand. It was easily half again as wide as my hand, it's wing span more than 4 inches across. Its wings, which had appeared to be highly translucent and nearly white while it was in flight, seemed to solidify before my eyes, and were actually a delicate shade of green. It sported two eye spots high on its shoulders and two others, more pronounced on its lower wings.

I was enthralled as it examined the back of my hand and then took off once more, landing at my feet. I didn't have my camera, as I generally don't carry it in my pj's. So, I thanked it for the visit, and came in to bed. When I woke hours later to the sound of a steady, soaking rain, after a brief moment of consciously loving the coziness of being warm and dry in bed, snuggled deeply between my two wonderful dogs while listening to it fall outside my window, my thoughts quickly turned to my visitor. How could its parchment wings survive such a downpour? Indeed, how long do such fragile and ephemeral beings come to stay at all?

It rained all night, and most of today, sometimes a lovely soft, misty rain, but at other times quite heavily. Often, I found myself thinking about my visitor, wondering how it could possibly survive. So you can imagine my delight when I went to call the dogs in a little while ago, and found my visitor once again fluttering around the spotlight. This time, I did grab the camera and stuck it in my pocket before I went out. I spent a little time with her, and offered her a drink from a leaf, which she took with her amazing tongue. She is a luna moth, as a brief search of the internet revealed to me. "Just" a moth. And just like the tiny hummingbird moth who visited the phlox in my garden a couple of summers ago, she has managed to stop time for me, quietly slowing my step, and forcing me, however briefly, to step back into the deep stillness of wonder.


Anonymous Beth Levine said...

What an amazing visitor, and what a great post!

11:32 AM  
Blogger Connordog said...

What a beautiful creature!

12:18 PM  

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