Sharing the moon


A dreamer is one who can find his way by moonlight. ~ Oscar Wilde

The tall, lithe woman walked gracefully, like a dancer, across the sandy beach, kicking off her shoes when she was halfway to the shoreline. As she walked, she stretched her arms out wide, slowly swinging her right arm up & behind her shoulder and rolling her head slowly from side to side. The sun had set an hour before and it was only the distant light of the next house on the beach that allowed me to see her silhouetted against the white-capped sea. The moon, having traversed across the sky unseen during the day was nearing the horizon line. Now a bright, slim sliver, it reflected a narrow path across the water as it hung low in the sky. The woman reached the shoreline and began to walk in the surf as if in a marching band, raising each knee high and kicking the water slightly. She moved from side to side, rhythmically, and seemed to be beckoning to the incoming waves. Without moving from my balcony, I watched her performing a dance: two parts exercise, one part worship. After a few moments, she stepped into the moon’s faint beam on the sand. She seemed to bow towards the moon although she might just have been picking up her shoes. She turned, and, after looking back at the water one more time, walked to her car and drove away.

The Yoga-Dancer's Moon

I picked up my camera and wandered out onto the beach, setting my tripod up away from the lights of the houses. I focused and opened the shutter, then sat quietly. About halfway through one exposure, I noticed a bright blue-white light moving down the beach. I saw the small, energetic dogs first, their masters next, as they approached. Turn around before you get near me I thought. Or turn off the flashlight. As they were almost directly opposite me, I heard one of the men say Is that someone taking a picture?. They stopped for a moment and looked out across the water without saying a word. One then stooped to pick up after the dogs and turned around, flashing the light my way for just a moment. They left as quickly as they came, trailing a light, marking their return path.

The Dogwalkers' Moon

I started again, as the moon, now a ruddy orange, hung for a few more moments above the outer barrier island. Just enough time, I thought. A few seconds later, a boat, returning late, turned into the channel, heading towards the marina. Like the dogwalkers’ torch, it trailed a steady light across the horizon, as it pulled into its evening port.

The Boat Captain's Moon


One more time I aimed the camera. As I waited, I stretched like the yoga dancing woman. I finished the exposure, and, before I picked up camera and tripod, I gave a slight bow to the water and said goodbye.

Alone by myself with the Moon

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10 responses to “Sharing the moon

  1. Again, this is a lovely post, and the photos are exquisite – thanks for sharing your night on the beach with us!

  2. I need to spend more time on beaches at night! I think the dog walkers’ moon might have been my favourite as a picture.

    • Hi Gabriel. I didn’t think that their light would be picked up, except for the point where they stopped. I think, though, that is where there is a break in the squiggly light. They must have been pointing it downward, or out towards the water away from the camera. I love it, though, that they are no where in the picture! That is one of those things that amazes me about low-light/long exposure photography.

  3. Too much Ann
    Have a nice day and week also