Friday, June 17, 2011

Sihining Selene

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;
One by one the casements catch
Her beams beneath the silvery thatch;
Couched in his kennel, like a log,

With paws of silver sleeps the dog;
From their shadowy cote the white breasts peep
Of doves in a silver-feathered sleep;
A harvest mouse goes scampering by,
With silver claws, and silver eye;
And moveless fish in the water gleam,
By silver reeds in a silver stream.
- Walter de la Mare

Selene and Endymion, Moritz von Schwind
Oil on canvas, 1831

The moon was extraordinary last night, voluptuous and round, beaming so brightly it was as if Selene would climb right out of it and step down onto Earth.

According to Greek mythology, Selene is the personification of the moon, a pale beauty shimmering with light. There are several versions of her story, but the basic story is this; one night, she happened upon a very handsome shepherd asleep in a field. The man, Endymion, was the mortal son of Zeus, and Selene fell in love with him instantly. They became lovers.

Being immortal herself, Selene did not want Endymion to die and leave her alone, so she went to Zeus to ask him to make her love immortal. Zeus agreed, but on one condition...Endymion would have to sleep through eternity. Both Endymion and Selene agreed, and the handsome love of Selene lived with her through eternity, smiling in his sleep as he dreamed he held the moon in his arms each night as she visited him.

Such is the power of love, that we want it to be eternal, and we'd be willing to spend it in a dream world to have it.


It stormed here quite terribly today, but this evening is clear and bright again. I sat for a long time watching Selene rise in the sky. In all her silvery essence, she is once again casting shadows into the deep woods off the deck here in Weldon Spring, and I am mesmerized by her.

I wish you eternal love today.

The music choice today is Claude Debussy's "Claire de Lune" or (loosely translated) The Shining Moon.

I love that this video is so fittingly performed by women. I think Selene would be proud. Chien-wen Liang plays the violin, and the pianist is Mei-Ling Chieh from a recital performed in 2007 in Taiwan...enjoy!


  1. The moon has been magical up here too. I love watching it travel until it shines through the window at the top of the house.

  2. Nice post. The moon was brilliant here too!

  3. Thank you, Pondie and Lizzy. I love thinking about all of us admiring Selene fron our own backyards, no matter how far away we are from each other.

  4. as a cancerian moonchild i enjoyed this post very much - selene is one of my favorite goddesses! i felt fortunate to enjoy the eclipse of the moon here in greece ~

  5. jo the words of walter, the painting, and your own unpacking and wishes are as full and beautiful as the moon itself. she wakes me in the night when she's full and just like night rain, i'm glad to get up and enjoy the experience. steven

  6. Thanks Jo. I tried and tried to read the whole essay but never was able to stay awake long enough, though smiling the whole while I'm sure.

  7. Oh Amanda...fortunate, indeed!!! To see Selene in all her glory in her home country would be magnificent!

    Hope your trip is going well and you are uncovering more and more delicous stories for us!
    Take good care,

  8. Oh, Steven, yes. When she bids us to rise and watch her, there is no denying her.

    I plan on seeing her again tonight.

    So good to hear from you,

  9. Dubby, you always know how to make me smile...even in your sleep, it seems!

    thank you so much,


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