The Stars Remain

by Randy Murray on March 27, 2014

My neighborhood is quiet and tree-lined. At night I can go out into my back yard and see no one and hear only the occasional passing car on the streets nearby. Sometimes I hear the faint rushing sounds of cars on the outer belt highway to our South. When the clouds permit, I can see the night sky, the moon, and the brightest stars.

But they are not the stars of my youth. The nights here are never as black and dark as I remember them being. There were nights when I could see not only the stars, but the vast, cloudy arm of the Milky Way galaxy. I could lie on the ground and see the universe spin overhead and it felt as if I might fall off the Earth and spin away into that vast, sparkling sea.

Now my nights today are brighter. The city lights are inescapable. The cars roar by. The brightest stars burn through, as does the ever-bright moon, but the others are lost, missing from view.

But they remain. The stars, the galaxy, and all those myriad, spinning clusters of stars go on, even when I cannot see them. I remember that I once could walk out my back door to see them all. Now I have to plan, travel, and wait patiently to explore them again.

It’s worth the wait, the travel, the planning. The architecture of the sky beckons. Stretched out on the sandy beach with the roar now waves, not cars, I will see them again. And there I’ll find comfort in the grand parade and my place in it.


The Stars Remain by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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