Finding words to express the inexpressible

“Don’t tell me the moon is shining;
show me the glint of light on broken glass.”

Anton Chekhov

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Were you moon watching last night, or the night before? Judging by Twitter and Facebook comments, many people were checking the full moon’s size, having heard it would be the closest and largest full moon of 2013 — a super moon.

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Astronomers (or would that be astrologers?) have said the moon won’t be this close to earth again until August 2014.

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Full moon rising, June 22, 2013

I took photos of the super moon when it occurred in May 2012. This year’s photos don’t look much different, and yet just like other times, I was drawn to stand in the late night darkness and try to capture something of the wonder of the sight.

Astronauts marvel at the view of earth from their exceptional space perspective, and I suspect something akin to their awe is what I feel every time I consider a full moon. Another separate planet, distant, and yet not beyond reach.

Super Moon, June 22, 2013

Super Moon, June 22, 2013

I watch, fascinated, as the globe rises, hovers in velvet blackness over the horizon. The shutter clicks several times as I try for the clearest possible shot. But the results are always a disappointment. The images never produce the sense of wonder that I experience while watching the real thing.
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The same thing happens while fingers hover on the keyboard, waiting for my mind to produce exactly the right words of description. They don’t come.
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Fantasy isn’t my genre of choice to write, but I admire the author’s ability to manufacture strange new worlds and convey them with words that allow me to visualize them. How frustrating that I cannot describe something clearly seen, while they do such a magnificent job of describing something that doesn’t exist! Is it because I lack imagination or vocabulary?
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What draws you to your genre of choice? Do you write in that genre because it’s what you prefer to read, or possibly because the tools needed — the words — are plumbed from a familiar depth?
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“The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”

Psalm 19:1

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“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?”

Psalm 8:3-4

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