“We and the cosmos are one. The cosmos is a vast body, of which we are still parts. The sun is a great heart whose tremors run through our smallest veins. The moon is a great gleaming nerve-centre from which we quiver forever.” D.H. Lawrence
Throughout my childhood I was fortunate enough to travel far and wide with my family. We traversed the United States, visiting Yellowstone National Park, Yosemite N.P., Grand Canyon N.P. and more more beautiful and wild American places. We crossed the Atlantic Ocean to visit London and to see Stone Henge at dawn. We vacationed on various Caribbean Islands.
The stars have always fascinated me. It is a fact that when we look up into the dots of light in the night sky we are looking into the past, in some cases billions of years into the past. By the time starlight reaches Earth the star from which that pinpoint of light originated may have long since expired. The light we see may actually be all that remains of the last years of life of a magnificent star. This bit of history led to my greater appreciation for my Cosmic Family Experience.
At the adventurous age of ten, while traveling in the back seat of my parent’s rental car across the plains of South Dakota in the dark of night, dad stopped for a night’s rest at a small, – “quaint”, mom and dad would say – motel.
As a young girl I had great fear of spiders, even the small spiders that roam most homes in the winter. One thing I learned as a child was that spiders in the western and southern States could grew really big, as in tarantula big. The thought of spiders the size of my palm, wandering about or hiding in cracks or under rocks, made me cautious about my every movement in the “great outdoors”.
So, imagine my terror when, in the dark of night, I stumbled on a rock and found myself on the ground as I was walking up a rocky path to that “quaint” motel. However, before I could leap up in horror of the spiders that could be crawling on me, my eyes caught the most magnificent image – the night sky of the plains of the Dakotas. I literally double blinked since my mind couldn’t believe the fascinating picture they were taking in. It appeared as though someone had just opened an enormous poster of the night sky that you would see in magazines like Natural Geographic.
At home I would always look into the night sky and try to find Orion’s belt. Living in suburbia, near a major city, stars in the night sky were few and far between. That way my reality. The night sky was a canvas with a few dots on it. Here, in South Dakota, I could see what looked like the whole of the Milky Way: countless points of light and a white haze in the night sky that was actually the light of even more stars.
To this day my memory of that night sky still lights up in my mind as clear as the night sky on that night on The Great Plains.