Noctalgia is the term scientists have coined to describe the pain we feel, and will increasingly feel, as it gets more and more impossible to see the night sky— Its vast, mysterious stretches pinpricked only by faint galaxy glow and the show of constellations our fathers first taught us to find, assembling like a cast of familiar characters against dark velvet curtains. Now, we shade our eyes from the blare of city lights, the gaudy jewels decorating every monument and tribute to wondrous architectures. Now, we seek places where it might still be possible to commune with the dark—open stretch of beach far away from tourist boardwalks, mountaintops where the sky at night still looks like an inverted cup pouring indigo into the throats of valleys. In some cultures, the newly dead are given sky burials. Birds of the air break down the flesh of the body before the bones are ground to dust. In the hill country of my birth, on shelves of limestone the dead are wrapped in gauze and seated in a row so in their passage between worlds, they have a view of both earth and sky.