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Is that Venus? I was walking home. It was only half-four but already it was dark out. I guess that’s what happens in December. The lane I was walking down was fairly straight, bending only slightly, but quite long. Streelamps lit the way every so often. There was no one else around. I was captivated by a bright light in the sky. You once told me that planets don’t twinkle like stars. Red for Mars, white for Venus. I thought that it looked like Venus, but I couldn’t tell if it was twinkling or not. I didn’t think it was. I kept my eyes on it whilst I walked. It remained in front of me until I reached the end of the lane where I had to turn left onto the main road. It was a pleasant walk past a field with horses. I kept looking over my shoulder to check the light was still there. I couldn’t see the moon. As I walked, I remembered you showing me Orion’s Belt above the houses. The stars were spread like freckles, but there it was, a cluster that you could identify. I often call it Ryan’s Belt instead. I don’t know any other constellations except by name. Is the Big Dipper the same as the Plough? I know Ursa Major means the Great Bear. I know that Lupine means wolf-like and Vulpine fox-like. I’ve never taken astrology or Latin. Do you remember when we’d only known each other for nearly-three months? I went to Kenya for Christmas, and the sky was so clear over the hotel that I could see Mars and Venus like never before. I said to my dad, ‘Look, there’s Mars. There’s Venus. They don’t sparkle like stars. Vicky told me.’ I was proud to know, and proud that it was you who had taught me. I turned again and was finally on our street. That light was still shining. I was following it home to you. I knew if we went into our back garden, we could see it together. I wanted to know, Is that Venus? I knew that you would know. I unlocked the front door and walked inside. On my way to your bedroom, I looked out a window, and saw it was still in the sky. I knocked on your door and drew back your curtain. ‘Is that Venus?’ ‘Yeah. It is.’

Is that Venus