July 20, Day of the Moon

Worlds grow old and suns grow cold
And death we never can doubt
Time’s cold wind, wailing down the past
Reminds us that all flesh is grass
And history’s lamps blow out

But the Eagle has landed; tell your children when
Time won’t drive us down to dust again

Cycles turn while the far stars burn
And people and planets age
Life’s crown passes to younger lands
Time sweeps dust of hope from his hands
And turns another page

But the Eagle has landed; tell your children when
Time won’t drive us down to dust again

But we who feel the weight of the wheel
When winter falls over our world
Can hope for tomorrow and raise our eyes
To a silver moon in the open skies
And a single flag unfurled

But the Eagle has landed; tell your children when
Time won’t drive us down to dust again

We know well what Life can tell:
“If you will not perish, then grow!”
And today our fragile flesh and steel
Have laid our hands on a vaster wheel
With all of the stars to know

That the Eagle has landed; tell your children when
Time won’t drive us down to dust again

From all who tried out of History’s tide
A salute for the team that won
And the old Earth smiles at her children’s reach
The wave that carried us up the beach
To reach for the shining Sun!

For the Eagle has landed; tell your children when
Time won’t drive us down to dust again

– Hope Eyrie, Leslie Fish

On July 20, 1969, at 20:17 UTC, the Eagle landed on the surface of the Moon.

Forty-nine years ago today, Neil Armstrong took his one small step.

First-men-on-the-Moon_tcm25-482521

Forty-nine years ago today, they unfurled a flag and left a plaque inscribed with the following words: Here men from the planet Earth first set foot upon the Moon, July 1969 AD. We came in peace for all mankind.

Today, July 20, is International Space Exploration Day, the Day of the Moon. Most holidays belong to some particular nation or other, some religion or other, some class or other. But the night sky, and the Moon, and all its astonishments, those belong to everyone with eyes to look up and see and hearts to wonder.

Tonight, Melissa and I are going out into nature. We’re packing some sandwiches, some cheese, and bread, and wine, and even a book of verse. We’re going to sing Hope Eyrie, the world’s first Moon day hymn. We are going to look up into the night sky and marvel. Won’t you join us?

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About R. Jean Mathieu

They say he speaks five languages, was conceived on a chess board, and once seduced a tong boss' daughter and lived to tell the tale. All we know is, he's called Roscoe. You can find more scurrilous lies at rjeanmathieu.com and buy his books at fedoraarts.com. View all posts by R. Jean Mathieu

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