Moon Walk

By Libby Brydolf

November 21, 2022

Moon Walk

We make it to the brushy meadow before we get our first glimpse of the moon: a slip of glow rising. We watch in the cool spring evening until it hangs whole over Kwaay Paay Peak before continuing on the wide dusty track.

Two teachers, a dozen wild-eyed preschoolers and their parents, we are on a full moon hike, no flashlight in sight. We chat as we wander down a slight slope toward a grove of old oaks and watch shadows deepen in the rising blue light.

Granite boulders pop white in the moonshine. In the wet seep, frogs offer up mating calls and we inhale the scent of mud and mule fat. A hush when we hear the hoo-hoo, hoo-hoo of a great horned owl. Passing low willows, we enter a wide tunnel of leaf and limb into a blackness thicker than wildfire smoke. We slow our pace but carry on, stepping a little more carefully now.

Then comes the slip of a small hand into mine. I squeeze it gently as I wrap my own around the fingered form. It's not a hang-on-for-dear-life grip that comes from this silent anonymous hand. No, this hand seems content with the warmth of wordless touch connecting grown-up and child. For a few minutes, we walk palm to palm in the dark. Then the small hand slips away and we continue on, each a little less alone in the night.


Libby Brydolf writes and hikes in San Diego.


Image by wewi creative courtesy of Adobe Stock

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