moonlight on blue water

moon rises full
across a sparkling sea
the sun cedes the sky

You want to know something that absolutely fascinates me? Of course you do! You’ll need to think about this a bit so let’s go … ‘a full moon always rises at sunset’ … think about that for a moment. Have you ever seen the full moon rise at any time other than sunset? You know, like in the middle of the night or in the morning? The answer will be no because it doesn’t happen. OK, so far, so good. Now hold that thought and add to the fact that the lunar cycle is fixed … well OK, let’s say regular at 29 and a half days (29.53059 days to be precise). So every 29 and a half days there’s another full moon. OK? Now the next bit gets confusing but stay with me and let’s quickly recap;

  • full moon always at sunset
  • full moon occurs every 29.5 days

Alrighty, there’s another cycle working here too, the seasons. Every day the days get longer or shorter depending on the season you’re in and by ‘day’ I’m referring to the amount of daylight. So, here in SE Australia the days are growing longer as we march toward Spring. There’s a full moon this Thursday (2nd August) and it will rise at sunset even though the day has lengthened. What balance!

There’s lots more moonphase related stuff over at which is where I lifted the diagram below;

] moon phases diagram


Think about it next time you see a full moon rising … just remember ‘a full moon always rises at sunset’.

I’m the type of person who follows the moon and the seasons … I know where the moon will be (roughly!) at any given time of the day or night depending on where the lunar cycle’s up to.

Do you follow the moon? Do you use the sun to tell you which direction you’re facing? Do you live above the arctic circle? You can tell me what happens there! Do tell. I’m interested.

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