BLOG 60: BLUE MOON
By the time you read this we will have seen the Super Blue Moon which was full at 9.35pm
ET on 30 th August / 02.35am BST on 31st August. It was the first Super Blue Moon since 31st January 2018 and the last until 31st January 2037.
It is the third out of four Blue Moons this year and it’s also a Supermoon, meaning that the
moon is at the closest point it gets to us in its’ slightly off-circular orbit of Earth.
It amplifies the effect of a full moon. Physically it will have a gravitational pull on the tides
and tectonic plates. For us humans it is thought to affect circadian rhythms and mental
health thus interfering with our sleep patterns, menstrual cycles and moods - though it
continues to be studied, this is still mostly anecdotal.
One thing we can be sure of is the inspirational value of a full moon. In an instant you can
come up with numerous moon-inspired songs and pieces of music such as ‘Blue Moon’
(Rogers and Hart), ‘Harvest Moon’ (Neil Young), ‘Moondance’ (Van Morrison), ‘The Whole of
the Moon’ (Waterboys), ‘Clair de Lune’ (Debussy).
Visual representations also abound – think of the paintings ‘Fishermen at Sea’ (William
Turner) and ‘The Dance’ (Paula Rego), the photograph ‘Earthrise’ (Neil Armstrong) and new
touring works like ‘Museum of the Moon’ (Luke Jerram) - which I hope to see this year.
Historically the full moons have names. This time of year it is known by several names
associated with a time of plenty including Sturgeon Moon, Fruit Moon and Harvest Moon.
Gardeners and farmers synchronise planting and harvesting with this seasonal phase.
In the field of human endeavour we are witnessing a new space race between India, Russia,
China and America. A week ago India became the first country to land a lunar module near
the Moon’s south pole (Chandrayaan-3) - just three days before this, a Russian rocket crashed into the Moon’s surface (Luna-25).
Astrologers tell us that this Super Blue Moon is in Pisces and heralds a powerfully emotional,
compassionate, spiritual and creative time, possibly overwhelming and confusing – so take it
As the season changes, I wish you a creative and productive time.
(This is a ‘Calendrical Blue Moon’, meaning that it is the second full moon in a calendar month, as opposed to a ‘Seasonal Blue Moon’ where there are 4 full moons in a season, for example between the Summer Solstice (21st June) and the Autumn Equinox (23rd September), instead of 3).