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Luna Moth. ca. 1815.
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THE LUNA MOTH

My paintings have gravitated toward nightscapes over the past couple of months. The interplay of moonlight on plants and water and animals. And the moth is one of the nocturnal creatures that I have researched.

The Luna moth, in particular, intrigues me. The luminous lime green color, the size of its wingspan (up to 4.5" across), the distinctive eyespots on its wings. And in the final stage of its life, the adult Luna moth is also a poignant example of Life lived abundantly while in the process of dying. After surviving the perilous transitions from egg to caterpillar to cocoon, the winged Luna moth emerges. However, in this final incarnation it has no mouth. Consequently, it can only survive -- for about a week -- by living off the sustenance that it has stored from earlier stages. During this final stage of its life, however, how glorious. Females send out sounds and pheromones which attract males. The males mate all week long and the females mate and lay eggs. Thus, the sole purpose of the luna moth in its final stage is to use all of its remaining life force to participate in the act of creation.

 

 

 

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