I don't like walking at night. The houses are blank. Shadows multiply and stray with a fey perversity. Plants turn into animals. Sidewalks become black rivers as I splash blindly forward.
Street lights are weak and unreliable. Instead, I find that I look beyond their helplessness, years into the sky, into a distant lamp.
Surrounded by a choir of stars, fierce and white, she is a remote comfort. The cold light of the moon travels through the currents of galaxies, the archeology of the air, all the way to me – walking home from work.
And if I could, I would reach up to pull that chilly jewel away from her velvety setting, from her shadowy bed. I would feel the smooth facets, the gentle orbit, in my hand. I would let the light that was born inside her escape through my fingers, embroidering my arms with lunar silhouettes. I would place her in my hair and let her dreams and mythologies – Diana's hunt, Selene's chariots – illuminate it with their bright travels, sparkling through the dark map.
Her constant beauty will always be a comfort, an unimpeachable loveliness watching me. But she remains an aloof satellite, burning with a frosty purity. She is only a distant thought, and I continue to walk quickly.
Yet each night I can't help but feel – lightly, firmly – a pair of radiant hands on my shoulders, guiding me home.