AQUARIUS NEW MOON GUEST CONTRIBUTOR : MARCUS SEDGWICK
THU 11 FEB 19:05 - Mooning Monthly chilling out in the poetic winter landscape....
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Welcome to the second edition of MOON LIT, a monthly platform for new literature with a lunar theme. 13 notable writers have been invited to compose a poem for exclusive publication at each of this year's 13 new moons. These literary works seek to celebrate and revere, marvel, champion and cherish, whilst never shirking the necessary excavation of life's shadows in search of the priceless shining diamonds within. Each work is a poetic invitation to contemplate our reading of, and reaction to, circumstance, that we may more consciously direct our thoughts, words and actions toward positive benefit for All.
In many wisdom traditions the five days surrounding a new moon are considered the most advantageous window in the lunar month to plant seeds, both literal and metaphoric. A seed carries a clear intent for growth and fruition but requires nurture. Farmers across the planet still plant crops at new moon ensuring the best start for germinating shoots, drawing strength from the gravitational pull of the waxing moon. The best tended beginnings regularly produce the most bountiful harvests.
In planting clearly defined seeds of conscious intent at new moon, we too harness the same lunar tide to germinate and gather our own harvest from the fertile soil of circumstance. In a very literal sense, with care and attention, we aspire to reap what we sow from the conditions at our disposal.
I am particularly thrilled that this month's contributor to MOON LIT is Marcus Sedgwick, an internationally renowned, multiple award winning author of over 40 books with 2 million sales worldwide. He teaches periodically at various British universities and writes for several newspapers and magazines. He has judged numerous book awards, including the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the Costa Book Awards. He is the current UK nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award. He was born and raised in a small village in Kent but now chooses to live high up in a remote valley of the French Alps. His critically acclaimed book SNOW, a meditation on humanity's relationship with the wondrous winter white stuff, is a personal favourite and was serialised as a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week. The enduring influence of Snow melts into Marcus's new poem, written under last month's lockdown 'Snow Moon' in Leo (Mooning Monthly 113 still available here) and generously offered to MOON LIT for your quiet contemplation.
With your hands around our necks
With your hands at our throats
With your cold white hands put against our throats,
Was this the time to write poetry?
One moment the house, full of light and sound,
is with a click, darkness and silence.
Somewhere in this snow heavy night you have brought the lines down.
Under the weight of you on the roof
the house settles, the wooden skeleton easing
all at its own pace,
without the nervous rush of me.
A plane, far overhead, a plane at this late time,
a propeller not a jet. Far above the silent landscape,
unaware that we are bound below the snow moon.
The house ticks its near-silent ticks
The water I have left running, lest you freeze our lifeline, drips and trickles.
The fire gently breathes, hushing up the chimney.
And a voice speaks right into my head:
Our crime is our pain:
that we ever became distinct.
If you had a lesson for us, we missed it.
Your hands at our throats were too cold,
or maybe our hunger was too profound, but
perhaps there is still time to read something into you.
You could have told us about real power,
despite your distinct fragility.
About being distinct, in itself.
You still might.
The house is warmer with you on the roof,
we eat our way through fewer logs.
You protect the shoots of tender new plants from frost death.
And all this is to say nothing of your beauty.
So, now you remind me:
Everything lost to the snow will re-emerge in the spring,
as your pack on the high peaks steadily melts,
feeding the vital streams through the hot days to come.
Marcus Sedgwick 2021
As an additional treat, this month we open the doors of MOON LIT DISPLAY, our very own art gallery, exhibiting drawings, paintings, prints and sculpture by artists with a lunar bent. Each month, alongside our literary guests, a visual artist will be invited to share their most recent creative output, ensuring our exhibits are both cool and oh so contemporary.
Under this Aquarius New Moon we welcome architect and artist Colin Sheehan. Colin lives and works in London and is a founder member of ArtClub™ an international artist collective that aspires to inspire positive change in the world through their creative endeavour. I know for a fact that ever resourceful Colin hasn't had access to a printing press during lockdown, so has had to jump up and down on this work on his kitchen floor to produce a print. It's the first in a series that we hope to show in its entirety later in the year.
Colin Sheehan MOONLITS Linocut 32 x 24cm 2021
Just so you know, over the coming year MOON LIT will offer a monthly meditative pause under the poetic guidance of our distinguished literary guests. It is hoped readers will find time in busy schedules to unhurriedly savour their literary craft; to read and reread these new perspectives on the miraculous, beguiling life experience to which we all belong.
Do please share MOON LIT with others of similar lunar sensitivity, encouraging this illuminating verse to brighten our currently challenging, darkened times with the light of beauty and Love.
With love 'til next time
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