Aquila chrysaetos

Here is an excerpt from my third book, Seachd. Without giving too much away, I will share this section because this year marks the 50th anniversay of the moon landing. The eagle is my animal guide for the writing of Seach, which will be available this Fall, so here’s a wee little teaser. Enjoy!

“The Eagle has landed”.  In 1969, a spectacular event shook the world.  Three men travelled to the Moon, and two of them walked the lunar surface.  This was the mission of Apollo 11. This year marks the 50th anniversary of these triumphant moments in history.  The spacecraft was constructed as three distinct parts, of which one, the Lunar Module, was designed specifically to detach and land on the surface of the Moon.  This module was named Eagle.  Eagle was designed with two critical functions–descension to the surface of the Moon, and ascension to return to lunar orbital stage.  On its way to land on the Moon, Eagle separated from the Command Module, Columbia, and settled on what is referred to by scientists as the Sea of Tranquility, where Astronaut Buzz Aldrin flew the flag of the United States of America.  During the trip from Columbia to the Moon’s surface, Astronaut Armstrong is recorded as having exclaimed “the Eagle has wings”.

After their work on the surface was complete, Eagle carried Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin back to the waiting command module, and their colleague Michael Collins, only to be later jettisoned off as Columbia returned to Earth:  similar in name to the Sea of Tranquility, the destination was also a place named for peace . As the men had landed on one of the Moon’s seas, so they also returned home by sea.  Columbia splashed down into the Pacific Ocean–mission accomplished.

Naturally, the insignia for the Apollo 11 mission, as seen on patches, coins, and other items, was that of the national bird of the United States, a bald eagle.  This symbolic image shows the mighty eagle alighting on the surface of the moon, bearing an olive branch in its formidable talons.

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