Earth’s moon has always held a special place in my imagination. The full moon especially entrances me and brings to my mind all manner of romanticized and scientifically ludicrous imagery. But I’ve never been one to let science impede my heart’s yearnings or mind’s fantastical frolicking.
I know Earth’s satellite is virtually without an atmosphere, at least compared to Earth. The surface is utterly at the mercy of the sun’s rays on one side and unfathomably cold on the other. There are mountains, but no snow capping them. There are seas, actually plains of dark rock, mistakenly named by early astronomers. There is no cheese. Not a bit. Facts have their place, but my mind rejects what my brain knows.
As I close my eyes in the light of the full moon, I see vast white deserts dotted by lush oases. Pale stone spires reach heavenward, while robed men and women fly graceful ray-like creatures, their winged shadows chased by laughing children. Springs feed clear pools and trickling streams that quench the the sun-kissed vineyards and gardens. One might travel there at the speed of thought to marvel at their beauty, to lounge in a tree’s shade or share a meal with the denizens of the idyllic environs.
My brain remembers trivia about Earth’s tides and the monumental efforts undertaken to leave flags and footprints on the moon’s surface. It appreciates the dangers astronauts faced. Yet my heart declares the celestial body nothing short of magical, seeking to ride a moon beam to the oasis my imagination asserts is real. My face drinks in its reflected light as though thirsting for those springs. Its gravity pulls at my soul as surely as it draws upon our oceans.
Perhaps the moon triggers some ancient instinct within me, some primal or genetic memory, and exerts the same force that inspired legends of lycanthropy. Though on the hirsute side, I’ve yet to transform when the moon waxes full. I have dreamed of it and awakened somewhat disappointed. If I can’t travel to that oasis of my dreams, could I not at least grow some fangs and pursue deer through moonlit corn fields?
I’ll have to be content with writing tales of magic, of psychics who commune with the moon’s people across the gulf of space. I’ll spin yarns of moonbeam riders and heroes whose powers wax and wane with the monthly cycle. I’ll bask in the light, maybe occasionally howl, and sojourn through fictional deserts in my dreams, waking in my bed with an unquenchable thirst.