Does March 20, 2004 mean anything to you? Do you know, without a doubt, that it was a Saturday? If I read a novel, and it used the date of June 5, 2008 in the plotline, and the author wanted me to “suspend reality,” as they say, and pretend that in 2008, June 5th fell on, say a Sunday, I would have a hard time reading further. June 5, 2008, the morning I woke to find Will dead, was definitely a Thursday. So, with that in mind, last week I buckled down and changed a whole mess of petty created-life details in my current novel-writing work so that March 20, 2004 now falls on a Saturday, as did the actual 2004 Vernal Equinox. If that date (or any calendar fact between March 17 and April 1, 2004) has emotional significance for you, (and you’re one of my dear readers) I’m glad I did it.
And, Nessa Allen’s story is okay, or perhaps improved, by having it start on a Wednesday rather than a Sunday, although I am grinding my mental gears to recalibrate the fictional day-naming and activities. In previous versions, Nessa left home on a Sunday, with some pertinent Sunday-linked activities. Now, she leaves on a Wednesday, in order to make the Equinox land on Saturday. This has been a lot of work, but it feels good to be creating a fiction that is as true as possible.
Now that Nessa and I are right with the sun and the historic calendar, however, I’m still stuck with the moon glitch. The full moon was on March 6, nowhere near the 2004 Spring Equinox. Yet, I make it shine down on Nessa Allen, in full Goddess glory, on Friday, March 19th. I made peace with this a long time ago, in a previous blog. (Artist’s License to Kill, March 28, 2013.) Nessa’s off-schedule moon is an imaginary friend, and a useful tool, reflecting its magic light on my imaginary silly people.
The last time the moon was full, I went walking in my field at four A.M. I could see dew on the leaves on the apple tree. I saw the precious Queen Anne’s Lace, curling into cups of seeds. The dog ran around, chasing whisps of air shared with the nocturnals. I whispered the childish little rhyme Nessa hears beneath her full moon. First the sun, then the moon. Day, or night, is coming soon.
It’s that simple. I trust the real moon to forgive my artistic fault lines. I am more in tune with moon time than sun time, which marches on, rising and setting, running our daily clocks. The moon seems softer, more mysterious. She comes and goes like the tides, fluid and powerful like the ocean, always forgiving the sun’s relentless commands. All’s well.
Here’s the end of the novel’s little poem: First the sun, then the moon. Day, or night, is coming soon. Don’t be sad, don’t be tragic; sun is love, moon is magic.