Starwalks: Planet Watch
There is still time to catch the planetary show. On May 20, the red planet, Mars, will begin forward motion again and lose its brightness as it moves toward the star Spica in the Wheat Sheaf of the Virgin and onwards toward Saturn, retrograding through the stars of the Balance. Both planets will be up in the sky at nightfall with Saturn still in the east and Mars overhead as May ends.
Jupiter will shine brightly as it sets towards the west, still among the stars of the Twins, visible close to the crescent of the Moon on June 1.
Mars will spend all of June and half of July approaching Spica, which is paired with the northern star Arcturus, a reddish star easily found by following the handle of the Big Dipper—‘Arc to Arcturus.’
By June 18, Saturn will be between the two brightest stars of the Balance, ZubenElgenubi and ZubenEschamali. Below it, low on the southern horizon, will be the ancient constellations of the Centaur and the Wolf. This group was known to the Greeks and Romans, as well as the older Akkadian civilization of the Euphrates. Using the Moon as a moving marker, you can see it close to Mars on the evening of June 7, and in the east just past Saturn on the evening of June 10.
The bright red star Antares, ‘The Heart of the Scorpion’ follows on the eastern horizon, and further to the left/north the brilliant Vega is seen.
A current resident in Pie Town, Thea Marshall has lived in NM for 34 years, and enjoys writing, her horse, and the stars.
A young boy complained to his father about how cold it was in the house. The father told him to sit in the corner. The kid asked why. The father said "Because corners are always 90 degrees."