Jean Francois Millet The Sheepfold by Moonlight.


Bliss Carman (1861-1929)

When all the stars are sown
Across the night-blue space,
With the immense unknown,
In silence face to face.
We stand in speechless awe
While Beauty marches by,
And wonder at the Law
Which wears such majesty.
How small a thing is man
In all that world-sown vast,
That he should hope or plan
Or dream his dream could last!
O doubter of the light,
Confused by fear and wrong,
Lean on the heart of night
And let love make thee strong!
The Good that is the True
Is clothed with Beauty still.
Lo, in their tent of blue,
The stars above the hill!



 What are the signs of Zodiac,

Marked in stars in Heaven's track?


In March a horn-ed Ram doth run
Between the visits of the sun.


April rides upon a Bull
Vigorous and beautiful.


The Twins we call the Gemini
May-month cradles in the sky.


In June the Crab goes crawling o'er
The spaces of the heavenly shore.


Where the Crab no longer creeps,
In July the Lion leaps.


Through August nights, like daisy-laden
Meadows, walks a Vestal Maiden.


September though it blows big gales,
Holds aloft a pair of Scales.


On October's map is shown
A star-bespangled Scorpion.


In November, kneeling low,
See, the Archer bends his bow.


December's frolic is a Goat
Bleating in his starry throat.


The Water-Carrier bears on high,
His jar in January's sky.


February brings a pair
Of Fish to swim in dark blue air.


These are the Signs of Zodiac,
Marking time in Heaven's track.

Eleanor Farjeon



 The Universe is all the skies

Reaching far beyond your eyes.


The Universe is all the seas
Spreading in unseen degrees.


The Universe is all the earth
Besides the spot that gave you birth.


If you can with your small eye
Know one star in all the sky;


If, of all the seas there be,
From one beach you know the sea;


If, of all the land on earth,
You can know one meadow's worth;


You might do a great deal worse
To understand the Universe.

Eleanor Farjeon.




Queen and huntress, chaste and fair
Now the sun is laid to sleep,
Seated in thy silver chair,
State in wonted manner keep;
Earth let not thy envious shade
Dare itself to interpose;
Cynthia's shining orb was made
Heaven to cheer when day did close.


Lay thy bow of pearl apart,
And thy crystal shining quiver;
Give unto the flying hart
Space to breath, how short soever:
Hesperus entreats thy light,
Goddess excellently bright:
Bless us then with wished sight
Thou that makes a day of night.

Ben Johnson



The Ride-by-Nights
by Walter de la Mare

Up on their brooms the Witches stream,
Crooked and black in the crescent's gleam,
One foot high, and one foot low,
Bearded, cloaked, and cowled, they go.
'Neath Charlie's Wane they twitter and tweet,
And away they swarm 'neath the Dragon's feet,
With a whoop and a flutter they swing and sway,
And surge pell-mell down the Milky Way.
Between the legs of the glittering Chair
They hover and squeak in the empty air.
Then round they swoop past the glimmering Lion
To where Sirius barks behind huge Orion;
Up, then, and over to wheel amain
Under the silver, and home again.


Thousands of pin-pricks in the sky
Like diamonds sparkling bright,
Contrasting with the inky blue
And velvet depth of night.
Winking and blinking, shivering stars
Shining from distant place,
Just like a jewelled tapestry
Hung out in time and space.

It seems the ceiling of the world,
Designed by Artist’s hand,
Is studded with rare and precious gems
Numerous as the sand.
A canopy of silver lights
Above the world so high –
The jewel box of the Universe
Is scattered in the sky.

Kathleen Gillum


The moon that sheds its gentle light,
Heralding the coming night;
Hills and trees in silhouette,
Now the sun, at last, has set.

Nocturnal creatures wake from sleep
And into wood and hedgerow creep,
A tranquil silence now descends,
That special time when daylight ends.

Wise old owls in barns survey
The silent passing of the day;
Bats unfurl and start to fly,
Clearly outlined in the sky.

Flowers close their petals neat
And to sweet repose retreat,
So a special spell is born,
Until dissolved by ‘morrow’s morn.

Brian Gent


The lights from the parlour and kitchen shone out
Through the blinds and the windows and bars;
And high overhead and all moving about,
There were thousands of millions of stars.

There ne'er were such thousands of leaves on a tree,
Nor of people in church or the Park,
As the crowds of the stars that looked down upon me,
And that glittered and winked in the dark.

The Dog, and the Plough, and the Hunter and all,
And the star of the sailor, and Mars,
These shone in the sky, and the pail by the wall
Would be half full of water and stars.

They saw me at last, and they chased me with cries,
And they soon had me packed into bed;
But the glory kept shining and bright in my eyes,
And the stars going round in my head.

Robert Louis Stevenson




Out from the silent portal of the hours,
When frosts are come and all the hosts put on
Their burnished gear to march across the night,
And o'er a darkened earth in splendour shine;
Slowly above the world Orion wheels
His glittering square, while on the shadowy hill
And throbbing like a sea-light through the dusk,
Great Sirius rises in his flashing blue.
Lord of the winter night, august and pure,
Returning year on year untouched by time,

Bliss Carmen.






SILVER - Walter de la Mare

Slowly, silently now, the Moon

Walks the night in her silver shoon;

This way and that, she peers, and sees

Silver fruit upon silver trees;

Crouched in his kennel, like a log

With paws of siver sleeps the dog;

From their shadowy cotes

The white breasts peep

Of doves in a sivery feathered sleep.

A harvest mouse goes scampering by,

With silver claw, and silver eye; 

And moveless fish in the water gleams

By silver reeds, in a silver stream. 

Moon seen over Falsgrave rooftops, in Scarborough UK. JUNE 28 at 23h 45 Local Time

"'MOON MAGIC' --- A poem by Pamela Tennant (I learned this, as a junior school child, at the Church of England Primary School in Normanton, West Yorkshire, England.

'One day when father and I had been
To sell our sheep at Berwick Green;
We reached the farmhouse late at night,
A great Moon rising round and bright.

Her strange beams shed on all around,
Bewitched the trees and streams and ground;
Changing the Willows beyond the stacks,
To Little old men with crouching backs.

Today the Sun was shining plain,
Theu all were Pollard willows again;
But at night, do you believe they're trees?
They're little old men with twisted knees!'


The Ram, the Bull,and Heavenly Twins

And next the Crab, the Lion shines,

The Virgin and the Scales.

The Scorpion, Archer and Sea Goat,

the Man who pours the Water out,

And Fish with glittering scales!

by Cheryl Scheff
The tender night laid bare her stars;
No cosmic cunning could ignite
A shadowed deer from prying eyes of flying fox, with crescent moon ear:
Nymphs danced in delight on open page.
The book of woodland wisdom had come of age.

The Art work of Lisa Falzon.
Thank you Cheryl and Lisa for the words and the beautiful Art work.

Caught betwixt the twigs
In autumn's night sky;
Leaves framed in Moon's embrace.
Weaving in and out of clouds,
Basking in the glow of March madness
Until the wolf howls at her fullness. 
Cheryl Scheffer,

Image and words courtesy of Cheryl Scheffer of Sydney Australia, where tomorrow, March 20, it is the start of Astromomical Autumn. Thanks so much Cheryl!

Friends of Mine

The stars are friends of mine. To lofty height,
When falls the sombre canopy of night
Upon a slumb'ring world, my spirit flies
And treads with them the highway of the skies.
We stride from world to world, while they rehearse
The mighty chorus of the universe.
We wander into fields of azure blue
Sprinkled with diamonds of varied hue,
Seek the lost Pleiad through skies aflame,
And learn from her the secret of her shame.
They mark the ways of men and shake with mirth
At all the customs of this lowly Earth.
Great wisdom and great mysteries they know.
They tell the story of the Long Ago
Ere Time was born, when Chaos had its sway,
And Darkness held its mantle over Day.
Why should I prize the boasted things of Earth
When I can walk with stars and share their mirth,
Their wisdom and their mysteries divine ?
I'd rather walk with stars. They're friends of mine,

Richard Herbert Mann


HAIL ! wondrous visitant to this our sky!
Once more thou shinest on the human eye;
How far remote thy ample rounds have been
Since last thy blaze by mortal man was seen!
Who can behold thee on thy rapid flight,
Steering thy course towards the fount of light,
Without being wrapt in deep solemnity,
Or bending low before the Deity
Who form’d thy shape—and with a mighty force
First launch’d thee on thy long eccentric course,
To traverse worlds to human sight obscure,
And all the test of ages to endure?
Yet still how small a speck art thou in space!
And e’en th’ included compass of thy race
Is but an atom in that mighty whole
Unfathom’d by the powers of the soul.
Still thou, the common dictates of thy God
Obey’st in truth, and moveth at His nod
Amongst those worlds of strong attractive force,
Ne’er straying from thine own allotted course.
Since last thou pass’d the confines of this earth
A new-born race have burst forth into birth;
And scarcely one remains below to tell
When thou of earth didst take thy last farewell!
E’en he who mark’d thy course and laws so true,
Ere thou return’d, hath bid this world adieu;
While each succeeding rout thou dost perform
Mankind are swept by Time’s destroying storm
From off this earth—leaving no trace behind
But the succeeding offspring of their kind:
But thou, from age to age thy course doth run
In thine elliptic journey round the sun;
And at the end of every seventy years
Thy lustre to the human eye appears.
Here let me gaze on thee with sweet delight,
For thou proclairn’st the power and the might
Of the Omnipotent—whose hand divine
First gave thee speed, and caused thy train to shine!

Giotto's image of COMET HALLEY