The Ghost of the Shimmering Summer Dawn

has returned in the East to us,
as darkness gives way to morning light,
after hiding behind the Sun all spring.
He prepares quietly for the autumn hunt,
and then always moves south for winter.

Orion

Late July and early August are when Orion the Hunter appears in the East with the dawn. It is one of the constellations that even non-stargazers can find in the sky because of the very distinctive three “belt” stars (Mintaka, Alnitak, and Alnilam) which point upward. The 3 stars of his sword and the stars that form his bow are also quite clear.

Orion has been hiding from me as the stars pass behind the sun in the Northern Hemisphere’s spring and by June Orion is gone from my sky. But he faithfully, predictably returns now when I mark my midsummer.

From my Northern Hemisphere home, Orion appears in winter moving across the south during the evening hours. If I was in the Southern Hemisphere, the constellation would be almost overhead at year’s end.

Orion and Jupiter over the Forest

Circumpolar

2016-05 Grand Ballon circumpolar star trails 01
image via Wikimedia Commons

Like stars that neither rise nor set,
I stay up at all hours lately.
Not every day, not circling endlessly,
but tonight I watch the Big Dipper
in solidarity. Awake in day and night.

 

stars

The circumpolar Big Dipper and the W-shaped constellation Cassiopeia circle around Polaris, the North Star, in a period of 23 hours and 56 minutes. The Big Dipper is circumpolar at 41 degrees north latitude, and all latitudes farther north.
via https://earthsky.org

A Graveyard of Stars

graveyard

Image by scartmyart from Pixabay

Remains of many dead and dying stars
in a vast graveyard near the center
of our Milky Way galaxy in a
black hole where the dead feed on
others – like celestial zombies emitting X-ray howls.

 

graveyard of stars

Milky Way center —by NASA, ESA, SSC, SXC & STSCI

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