Day length is being clipped at both ends: the sun rises a minute or two later every morning and sets a minute or two earlier every night.
The month began with 14 1 2 hours of daylight; today is 35 minutes shorter than Aug. 1 and, in the coming two weeks, an additional 39 minutes will be added to nighttime. We are shifting toward the period surrounding the autumn equinox (Sept. 22) when day will be equal to night.
Consequently, it is becoming easier to rise to see the wonders of the cosmos at daybreak, at the late hour of 5 o'clock, and in twilight until 5:30. Sunrise will be 6:03 tomorrow and a minute later each day this week.
If you were awake during the wee hours for the Perseid meteor showers, you might have noticed planet Jupiter rising in the east close to 3 a.m. See this brilliant star-like object well above the eastern skyline in the morning sky, easily visible until half an hour before sunrise.
Find less bright, ruddy Mars below and slightly to the left of Jupiter an hour before sunup. Then, to the king of the gods' right, discover the constellation Orion the Hunter stretched out on its side, reclining above the southeastern horizon. This dominant constellation of winter nights quickens and delights in the summer morning. Drop your gaze to spot brilliant, distant sun Sirius well below the three stars of Orion's belt.
On Tuesday, the Full Grain Moon climbs above the eastern skyline at 7:15 p.m., opposite sunset at 7:54. The moon arrives at full phase at 9:45 p.m. Next morning, Wednesday, enjoy the full moon suspended above the western horizon while Jupiter reigns opposite.
To contact Judy Isacoff go to: www.naturesturn.org