“Earthshine” is reflected earthlight visible on the moon’s night side, giving the portion of the moon bathed in earthshine a ghostly glow. Upon seeing earthshine, you would see a regular crescent moon, but with the rest of the moon, which is normally obscured, visible in a ghostly light. (“Its circle shows / In a ghostly glow / Of earthly luminescence.”) The idea of the pale image, rendered visible not by its own light but by the reflected light of another body, signifies how one can be visible to others but only as a pale facsimile in the same way that’s referenced in “A Secret Touch,” in which you’re a part of what’s going on, but because of your experience, you’re also apart from what’s going on.—Rob Freedman, Rush Vault
“‘Earthshine’ was the first song we wrote for Vapor Trails but was completely rewritten. Even the lyrics were changed around. Musically, it was a completely different song from what it was, and it was a complete song in the beginning. We had all the parts, the lyrics, we worked it out. But there was something about it that just didn’t knock us out.” —Alex in Contents Under Pressure
“‘Earthshine’ was just not right in its original incarnation. The lyrics were very interesting, and very evocative, but I didn’t feel in the end—and Alex agreed—that the music really equaled what was there lyrically. We were selling the lyrics short. So we had this jam music that we really were excited about, especially this riff, this main riff, that became the verses for Earthshine, and I rebuilt the song vocally around that riff. Then we proceed to just carry on with it, and before we knew it we had a whole new song that was really exciting.” (Rockline, 2002)—Geddy in Songfacts
~ by rvkeeper on January 12, 2011.