By the Light of the Silvery Moon
This was the first line on a song, sung by Doris Day. My mom Sybil Beck would sometimes sing a line or two as was her habit with any song. I don’t know if I am becoming overly sentimental or whether I am just noticing things more acutely, but the moonlight on the snow seems exceptionally beautiful. The shadows cast by a full moon makes silhouettes of the bare tree branches. They somehow appear more hauntingly romantic and ghostly. The limbs dark specters on the silver-blue snow are more impressive than the same shadows painted by the sun.
I also like to see the bright moonlight falling on tree branches coated with snow or ice. The freshly fallen snow is given a glow with a bluish sheen and the icy crystals shine with a silver gleam that appears to come from somewhere deep inside of their clear cold shell.
One of the many general types of winter’s scenes that will entice me to stop, take a second look, and possibly a third happens when the brilliant sheen of the moonlight slides across a pond or lake to create a lustrous pathway. The moon’s rays form a straight road that points its shining fingers back at its creator, the moon.
One specific incident that captured my imagination occurred one night as I drove on Route 130, near the little town of Pleasant Unity, Pennsylvania. The moon was exceptionally bright. I was paying only slight attention to the beauty that lay all around me and I was concentrating on the road and the driving conditions when I was assaulted by an inspiring vision of enchantment.
A small barn that was set back off the road at the edge of a field was bathed in the light of the full moon. It glowed as though it had been built of silver. Its sides were shining even more brightly than the blue snow reflecting the moon’s soft glow that surrounded it. The snow covered roof and cupola were framed by the black velvety sky and the night’s white starred gems. The scene is still firmly lodged in my head, after all of these years. I am trying to share that vision with you, but I feel my words are woefully inadequate to express the awe and beauty that I experienced so many winter nights ago.