Drawing down the moon

photo of full moon taken through branches of the birch tree in the back gardena few seconds later, photo of full moon taken through branches of the birch tree in the back gardenBEFORE Artist’s residency at Plymouth Arts Centre: the garden, night time. A frog, unseen, gurgling to the music of water tickling into the drain by the back door. Sweet white liquorice smell of bean flowers, water hawthorn vanilla ice scenting the air around the pond. The temperature slowly dropping, a degree lower every night once the sun goes down. I’m hunting spiders in their webs with my camera, but the webs are past their best, ripped by the wind. The moon’s up. High and bright white, a slice off full; clouds like star fields and moody galaxies.

I stand in the dark next to broad bean plants that are taller than me, with my camera at arms length held up to the moon. And pull: the shutter opens. Eyes wide, I breathe: clouds tumble copper, bronze and silver, the sky deep aquamarine; the moon shows a dog’s face, and the shutter closes.

In the bay window upstairs I draw down the moon, my pencil feels its way across the scratchy paper by moonlight. Drawing without looking. Through the double glazed window to the south east I can see another, smaller, more perfectly round moon lower down and slightly to the left, floating in the sky: the double moon.

Meanwhile, the real moon appears to be gliding in orbit upwards - due to the movement of the clouds, a curdled swirl of golden brown and mauve.