Watching the International Space Station Overhead

The third brightest object in the sky

tonight is the International Space Station.

Precisely at 5:37pm, one minute, above South-Southwest.

If only my world was as predictable,

my orbit stable, looking down on this.

 

nyc ISS

The Atlantic east coast of the United States from the ISS. Easy to recognize cities include New York City and Long Island at the right and to the left for Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington DC near picture center.

If you want to watch the ISS pass over your home (it’s visible with naked eye), check at SpotTheStation.nasa.gov

Apogee and Perigee

Like the Moon’s oblong circling of us,

we move in our eccentric crisscrossing orbits

around each other and some unseen centerpoint.

Tonight at apogee, distant in cold space.

If there’s a future, there’s also perigee.

 

moon and woman


Perigee is when the Moon is at its closest point to Earth in its orbit, while apogee is when it is at its most distant. Like everything else in nature, the Moon’s orbit is always in flux and its shape and its orientation relative to the Earth and the Sun change all the time.