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3am wake up call. Perseids Meteor Shower. I’m more awake than I thought I’d be. My cat is too. She squeaks and clicks like an old computer starting up as I maneuver her into her harness. She trot trot trots, out across the damp grass, its sun-roughened edges softened, to check out the garden at the fence line.

Mom and I take the stand-alone hammock, and Dad has the lawn chair recliner. Maezie, our Golden Retriever, whacks her “pwinkie bwankie” around ferociously, hitting the ground in rapid thumps. Then she’s off to see what the cat’s up to. I head back in for another blanket. It’s too chilly out. When I return, I tell of my latest find this past week: the Viking sun stone, and how they’d use it to find the sun on a day of thick, thick clouds.

Light sparks across the sky, leaving luminous streaks behind. Some are the tiniest of spurts while others are a blaze of glory, burning up in our atmosphere. Their tails linger behind, the last to fade. How long has it been since I truly stargazed? Too long. Two years? At least. Mom remembers middle-of-the night phone calls to her dad, “You have to see this!” And middle of the night phone calls to her. Shooting stars. Lunar eclipse. Solar eclipse aligned in syzygy.

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