A Graceful MoonThis week we enjoy the start of the lunar cycle, from New Moon on the 6th through the waxing crescent phases. The Moon travels higher and more southerly each evening, as it starts its monthly orbit around the Earth, gracefully slipping along the ecliptic and closely brushing up against planets and bright stars. The view on Thursday 9th should be particularly engaging, as bright Venus stands in contrast to the brighter (but more diffuse) thin crescent Moon. You will need a good western horizon to enjoy this, where the pair will shimmer in the dusk sky. Later in the week the Moon will slide past bright star Spica and Saturn, and happily will set well before midnight, so as not to interfere with the Perseids meteor shower. More on the Perseids in my next blog post. For now, Clear Skies and Happy Viewing!