GREEN DRAGONS AND ANALEMMAS

Expanding your  (mental)   horizons here:

I’ve written a bit about Light lately, here in the Spruce Tunnel.  I’ve been thinking about it a lot more.

Last night I was positively kept awake  all night by . ..  light.    Right in the dark,  there was the Super Snow Moon,  full and bright, about 30% brighter, they say,  because it’s a bit closer to the earth right now by 17,000 miles, I heard.      (So many conflicting facts out there!)

It wasn’t the moon that kept me awake,  it was the light of the moon:

Moonlight back

I think I showed similar photos a month ago,  but here’s the one from this week’s Super Full Snow Moon.      My house was surrounded by the sharp shadows of trees and shrubs.    As the moon moved in the sky,  the shadows were cast from different angles and the patterns kept on changing.

It was a constant delight from window to window.

I had visitors in the moonlight too:

Moon deer

That got pretty grainy because I was trying different settings on my camera.   I had deer footprints all over the pond and the yard the next morning.    Guess they were enjoying the moonlight too.

So Light reflects off the moon,  and it comes from our sun.

Here’s some fun with sunlight:

camera

Start with a  camera.    Pick a time of day,  the same time every day.   Take one snapshot of the sun.    Come back each day at that time and take another snapshot.   If you can do this every day for one year,  you won’t get 365 pictures that look all the same;   you will get a pattern.

 

The pattern is called an analemma.

Here’s one professionally done:

Analemma

 

Look it up in a Search Engine,  Images.    You’ll see that the sun makes that same pattern no matter who does it.   It won’t be quite that same pattern from the south or north poles, because your camera will see a different angle.     And if you do it on Mars?   It looks like a tear drop!

Speaking of Mars,  and outer space,   and lights and shadows,   remember that object that they discovered out there at the edge of our solar system that they called “Ultima Thule”  — making a joke, they were.   It caught their attention because it looked like it was made up of two unequal sized globes glued together somehow.     Since they didn’t know how that could be,  some speculated that maybeit wasn’t a natural object.

Well, then it moved.  And now we have a different view on it:

ULTIMAThule pancake

It wasn’t two globes stuck together at all.   The distant light shows us a peculiar double-circled flat shape.    And now scientists  really  don’t know how that could have formed naturally.

And here’s an un-natural natural phenomenon:

Green DRAGOn Aurora 260

A brilliant green dragon rises from the earth,  unfurling its wings, tossing its head,   ready to roar and spew out fire . . . .

Or so it seems.

It’s a recent aurora;  the northern lights.     If you were lucky enough to be in Iceland that night,  maybe you would have been a little startled.

Once you see something, you can’t un-see it.

I know what northern lights are.   But this still looks menacing!

The first command given in this cosmos:  “Let there be Light!”

Indeed.

 

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