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Beguiled by a Month of Full Moons

Beguiled by a Month of Full Moons

My friend Karen calls January “an honest month.” I agree; it is what it is. Mornings are reluctant, evenings jump the gun. The trees put on no pretense of leaves, flowers or fruit, and the sea doesn’t play nice. But this January, I fear the month of Janus (god of the doorway) is up to a little mischief, toying with my need for sleep and taking advantage of my inherent gullibility.

While I know it’s seemingly impossible for any month to have more than two full moons, the last two weeks have seen night skies awash in light and filtered by shadows. I’m hard pressed not to recall a glowing pearl outside the east side dormer when I retire, and my west side window when I wake. When I shared that observation with a friend, marveling at our well lit nights this month, she kindly replied, “Oh Tom, that’s just what happens when we don’t have cloud cover for a couple weeks; you get to see the moon more than one night at a time.” (Hmm, so she says. Seems too easy an answer for my moonstruck anomaly.)

Still, I may have to stand my ground, dispute some science, scoff at heavenly orbits, and challenge the astronomers for in my heart I know it’s been a month of full moons, honest.


  1. Is there something “THEY” are not telling us? I have also noticed the moon’s glow which accompanies and begs for… “the heaven tree of stars hung with humid night blue fruit”. James Joyce.

  2. That’s so funny…I thought the same thing just the other night! It’s amazing how I’ve just gotten used to the cloud cover too! Seriously, though, it’s amazing to walk outside to that beautiful orb in the sky…so beautiful.

  3. I’ve also noticed the moon a lot more this month. Amazing what the lack of clouds will do. That and the three full moons, really make for a lot of glow. 😉

  4. Beautiful and spooky photos! What settings did you use on your camera? I’ve been trying to take night photos of the Christmas lights in the yard but can’t make it look right.

  5. Hi Anne W, I have a point and shoot canon 450S, and the auto is pretty impressive if placed on a tripod or in this case held still on a fence post.

    I’ve tried the manual setting but it lets too much light in with the lowest setting so the image looks even spookier but unfortunately less discernible.

    You may try using a tripod and then trying out different shutter speeds. If your camera doesn’t have that option, try it on its low light auto setting. Another tip, try times of the day where there’s more light, but it’s still darkish, such as dusk or early morning. These photos were taken around 6 o’clock as I recall. Good Luck!

  6. Tom – I got curious over the moon issue. Full moon came out January 10th. August is the only month this year where we will see two full moons. The second one is what they call a blue moon thus the phrase, “Once in a blue moon.”

  7. The last moon phase was incredibly beautiful. For several days I woke up in the middle of the night to find our living room flooded with this incredible silvery light, fantastic luminosity.
    Did you find any scientific evidence regarding the moon’s prominence this month?


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