harvest moon

"The Harvest Moon" by George Hemming Mason
“The Harvest Moon” by George Hemming Mason

Under the harvest moon,
When the soft silver
Drips shimmering
Over the garden nights,
Death, the gray mocker,
Comes and whispers to you
As a beautiful friend
Who remembers.

Under the summer roses
When the flagrant crimson
Lurks in the dusk
Of the wild red leaves,
Love, with little hands,
Comes and touches you
With a thousand memories,
And asks you
Beautiful, unanswerable questions.

~ Carl Sandburg
(Under the Harvest Moon)

21 thoughts on “harvest moon”

  1. A beautiful, inspiring poem with an equally mesmerizing painting. The words flowed like the wind, gentle and soothing. Once or twice in our lives, we walked ” under the harvest moon.” And the nostalgic memories brought a smile to my day. Thank you.

  2. The moon has been just amazing the past several nights. Even my two granddaughters, ages 2 and 4 noticed it. The four year old started a little dance when she saw it.

    1. It has been amazing – it seems to be so bright and so big – impossible to ignore! When you mentioned your granddaughter dancing it made me think of Van Morrison’s song, “Moondance” – “Well it’s a marvelous night for a moon-dance…”

  3. The moon was magnificent last night. It’s such a lovely light to sleep under, with blinds and windows open. Or to go “dancing in the night”, if that’s what the night might bring.

    Appreciating this poem and the beautiful, unanswerable questions that arise….

    1. Tim & I do that, too, sleep in the light of the full moon with the curtains open! Now your comment has made me recall another song, “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer:

      “Oh, kiss me beneath the milky twilight
      Lead me out on the moonlit floor
      Lift your open hand
      Strike up the band and make the fireflies dance
      Silver moon’s sparkling
      So kiss me.”

      It’s wonderful everyone is noticing this moon!

  4. HI Barbara,
    Great poem. I’ve read it three times. Have you shared Carl Sandburg with us before?

    “death whispers to you”

    “Love touches you with little hands
    and a thousand memories
    And asks you
    Beautiful, unanswerable questions.”


    1. Thanks, Rosie. I’m pretty sure this is the first Carl Sandburg poem I’ve shared. Isn’t it beautiful! He has a way of poignantly capturing the mysteries of life and death, questions and answers, being in the moment and the past with its memories…

  5. Hi Barbara! I just love this beautiful poem. It was a “perfect fit” for the arrival of this year’s “Harvest Moon.” And a wonderful reminder for me to take time to enjoy it! Fortunately, it’s not too late to see it. My understanding is that the best time to view it is just after sunset. So, that is what I am planning to enjoy with my hubby this evening. So, thanks very much for sharing this lovely, inspirational poem. By the way, I love your blog! I am looking forward to reading more of your lovely posts. Also, thanks so much for subscribing to my blog!

    1. You’re welcome, Donna! I’m looking forward to reading your lovely blog, too. One or two nights on either side of the full moon are as enchanting as the main night, I find. I hope you and your husband are enjoying the moonlight this very moment! She just popped up from behind the trees here… Lovely as always…

      1. I thought I would give an update on this evening’s beautiful “Harvest Moon.” Not long after sunset, I went outside with my husband to enjoy the view together. We looked to the evening sky, and much to our surprise, we could not find the moon at all. We looked east, west, south and north. Yet, there was no moon to be found. However, the sky was clear. We saw numerous stars. I said, “How could this possibly be?” So, we decided to take a stroll down the road to look for the elusive “Harvest Moon.” After a short walk, we looked “low” in the east sky. And low and behold, shining through the swaying palm trees was a bright “orange moon.” I have not seen anything quite like it before. I have seen many moons, but nothing at all like this. It really was breathtaking! The color was as crisp as an autumn day. Just stunning! Anyway, we both loved it. We will cherish the memory. Seasons will change, but memories will last forever. Thanks again for the reminder! I would have completely missed it otherwise.

        1. I’m so happy the Harvest Moon finally made an appearance for you! The exact time of the moonrise varies greatly, but as you noticed, like the sun, I think it is always in the east. Those orange moons are extra spectacular! You and your husband were blessed! As you say, “Seasons will change, but memories will last forever.”

Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

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