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NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day:

On flight day 13 (November 28) of the Artemis 1 mission the Orion spacecraft reached its maximum distance from Earth. In fact, over 430,000 kilometers from Earth its distant retrograde orbit also put Orion nearly 70,000 kilometers from the Moon. In the same field of view in this video frame from flight day 13, planet and large natural satellite even appear about the same apparent size from the uncrewed spacecraft's perspective. Today (December 1) should see Orion depart its distant retrograde orbit. En route to planet Earth it will head toward a second powered fly by of the Moon. Splashdown on the home world is expected on December 11.

I KNOW the splendor of the Sun,
And beauty in the leaves, and moss, and grass;
I love the birds' small voices every one,
And all the hours have kindness as they pass;

But still the heart can apprehend
A deeper purport than the brain may know:
I see it at the dying daylight's end,
And hear it when the winds begin to blow. 

It strives to speak from all the world,
Out of dumb earth, and moaning ocean-tides;
And brooding Night, beneath her pinions furled,
Some message writ in starry cipher hides.

Must I go seeking everywhere
The meanings that behind our objects be --
A depth serener in the azure air,
A something more than peace upon the sea?

Not one least deed one soul to bless?
Unto the stern-eyed Future shall I bear
Only the sense of pain without redress,
Self-sickness, and a dull and stale despair?

Nay, let me shape, in patience slow,
My years, like the Holy Child his bird of clay,
Till suddenly the clod its Master know,
And thrill with life, and soar with songs away.

Poem published in 1868  as part of "The Hermitage and Other Poems" by the house of Leypoldt and Holt.

Edward Rowland Sill (1841– 1887) was an American poet, essayist and educator born in Windsor, Connecticut. He graduated from Yale in 1861 and entered the Harvard Divinity School but left it to work for the New York Evening Mail. After teaching for three years in Ohio he moved to California where he became principal of Oakland High School. In 1874 he was appointed Professor Of English language at California University. Much of his work was published posthumously.

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NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day:

This colorful skyscape spans about four full moons across nebula rich starfields along the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy in the royal northern constellation Cepheus. Near the edge of the region's massive molecular cloud some 2,400 light-years away, bright reddish emission region Sharpless (Sh) 155 is at the center of the frame, also known as the Cave Nebula. About 10 light-years across the cosmic cave's bright walls of gas are ionized by ultraviolet light from the hot young stars around it. Dusty reflection nebulae, like vdB 155 to the right, and dense obscuring clouds of dust also abound on the interstellar canvas. Astronomical explorations have revealed other dramatic signs of star formation, including the bright reddish fleck of Herbig-Haro (HH) 168. Below and right of center, the Herbig-Haro object emission is generated by energetic jets from a newborn star.

Photo by Anthony Quintile

NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day:

Because the Gum Nebula is the closest supernova remnant, it is actually hard to see. Spanning 40 degrees across the sky, the nebula appears so large and faint that it is easily lost in the din of a bright and complex background. The Gum Nebula is highlighted nicely in red emission toward the right of the featured wide-angle, single-image photograph taken in late May. Also visible in the frame are the Atacama Desert in Chile in the foreground, the Carina Nebula in the plane of our Milky Way galaxy running diagonally down from the upper left, and the neighboring Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) galaxy. The Gum Nebula is so close that we are much nearer the front edge than the back edge, each measuring 450 and 1500 light years respectively. The complicated nebula lies in the direction of the constellations of Puppis and Vela. Oddly, much remains unknown about the Gum Nebula, including the timing and even number of supernova explosions that formed it.

Photo by Victor Lima

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