Midsummer Moons in England
As the midsummer solstice of the 21st June draws closer in the northern hemisphere, the days grow long and the nights shorten. In the quiet places, where city light is absent, the moon keeps even that fraction of night as eerily bright as day.
On the Helford River in Cornwall, England, the moon keeps the river bright from the moment it rises to the moment it sets.
I saw June's full room rise over the sea from the southern coast of Cornwall, just after watching an adaption of one of Roald Dahl's children's books, George's Marvellous Medicine, at The Minack Theatre, one of England's loveliest secrets, with my family.
As we watched the moon rose directly across from the cliffside theatre, over the sea, it was hard not to think of Dahl's famous words from The Minpins:
“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.”
It cast a golden path of mangata, the Swedish word for the moon's light on water, across the bays of southern Cornwall. Here it is at St. Michael's Mount, near Penzance. You can also spot Venus in the top right of the photograph.
The days leading up had been full of mangata. In Cornwall, some people swam in it, some of us just gazed.
Happy midsummer moongazing!