The moon is floating between the sky blue afternoon and the milky, indigo night which rises from below, over the ocean, over the clouds.
On the opposite side of the jetliner, a pink and orange diffusion of the sun is streaking through the oval windows. Their side—my fellow travelers’—is the sun and Westward promise. My side is the moon; the Orient awaits full of mystery and clarity.
The deep blue rises slowly as if night takes over from the depths of the Atlantic. The moon, large and white as a holiday bulb, sinks downward into the dark. Is it possible we have climbed high enough to be on the same level as the moon? High enough to outrun darkness just a little longer so that the moon falls instead of rises?
Sitting next to me under a red felt blanket, my traveling companion, my husband, says that since he was little, in the moon’s face he has always seen a gazelle. The leaping arch of hooves and the glorious powerful shadow of antlers as the gazelle throws its head back into what I might call the right eye of the Man in the Moon.
I look and I see it: the gazelle in the moon. It is jumping over a sand-fire or a watering hole. It is leading me, like a pearl suspended on the twilight horizon, to Africa.