Choose Darkness

me_as_a_raven_nightThe twilight, which brings in the evening, offers immutable intention, so different from its left-handed twin on the other side of day or night as one deems best to look. With the evening’s push against the day the crickets rub their wings together in anticipation of the trepidation that might follow them into night; for now as the sun blinks out, all the heat, so immensely stored all about the earth, must leave the land. Such departure has little to do with how cold or warm it might be; the vastness above pulls it like a blanket for its own warmth. And there is a chill left behind, which sits waiting for the uninitiated.

Nor does the heat simply rise into the air. For the twilight of evening also frees the druids from the tall black oaks. The druids ride the rising heat of the earth to do what nature demands of them in the darkness to come. It is the druids who make the leaves rustle even though there is no wind; the bending of the tuffs of grass bears witness to their passing; and should there be a moon upon the water, faint ripples can be seen where none should be, that too, the sacred priests of nature well about their work. They join the young wolf on the cliffs overlooking the forest and teach him to howl his presence that all might know he has moved to find his pack and a new territory. They lead the deer away from stream and open field to lay quietly tucked behind a screen of brush; their ears ready for any sound, and the place ordained that it provide ease of escape, should that be necessary. A druid sails with the Screech-Owl, and brings her to a perch, where they sit together, so she might learn silence and the way of the night.

All creatures understand this is time to be the hunter or the hunted, and it is the druids who guide all who dwell here. Evening twilight is the toll of life’s bell to meet the druids, to rehash what the day did bring, to plan what must be accomplished tomorrow, to survive the night.

The twilight of morning does not care to grip the day in any dark embrace; its concern is all about unfolding. It comes as a whisper in a lover’s ear, or a soft caress against a breast to stir the flames of a new passion. There is a misty shroud of softness all about; the trees, the grass, the water, stretching throughout the land; the entirety appears joined as one; each blending into the other, impossible to tell where one begins and the other ends. It is a time of awakening and ephemeral wonder: First, it is the sky that breaks away and offers a sleepy eye; ill-lit, it scarce can make out the small stream of clouds to the eastern sky. Then somehow, stretching, as does a great woods animal when it first rises from sleep, and then with great majesty moves to the bank where it takes its first drink, the light, in its fashion, sets pinks and greys against the far horizon, a vivid and glorious display of the light to come; and just as quickly as the tall antlered buck leaps from the bank at the sound of a branch breaking; the colors dissipate, and the day has arrived.

Morning is what we crave most. It offers a new start, and that is indeed a glorious purpose. But, dare you not forget the “dark night of the soul,” for learning is all about darkness, not light. The best of insight comes from the dreams that stir to us in the depth of night. Few ponder such dreams, and so they are bid to repeat them. Those who do ponder, do so with their eyes shut against the light; that they might touch the reason and the why of a matter. In the best of deeds and accomplishments, there are crucial times of darkness which test the resolve to continue. That darkness should not be feared or ignored; it is merely the time to know how well you might want the outcome.

A myriad of great teachers have long ago slipped into the dark shroud of our past. Yet they reach out to teach us in books, poetry, paintings, music, and the crafts they explored; and so we may move forward with their knowledge. The best of the teachers who even now dwell among us have already lived a life of discovery and learning; and their light too might bend towards the twilight of evening as they impart their knowledge to us. It seems a trade of sorts; we move into the light as they move into the darkness.

Yes, the light is the best of what is yet to be; know well however, it is the darkness which will give you the power to best explore the light.