4am and moonlight is spilling in the windows, casting long light shadows across the floor. It dapples the back clearing in bright puddles of light, there and there and there.

All other colors have been erased and everything is some shade of  blue or white or  black.

I stand and look, even through the heavy fog of needing sleep I see how beautiful the night is, how sharply the light draws squares on the wooden floor in the kitchen, how the shadows of the trees stripe the back yard…

The garden is magical, mystical, mysterious…petals that in sunlight are bright yellow or deep purple, are black, or blue, or white.

I know, I’ve written so much about 4am, the time ghosts walk, and regret leaks in under the curtains and blows around the room, when memories come and linger, and the past feels closer, maybe from dreams, maybe from the absence of all the pressing frenzy of “now”. In the quiet of the not quite morning there is nothing to compete with it, except the need to sleep and , on this night, the moonlight.

I get back in bed and watch the moon trace a slow path behind the trees, certain I will not sleep again. But finally, I do.

Stunning image used by permission by Junichiro Aoyama

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