The Dawning of the Day

In the midst of my preparations for last week's reflections on John's Gospel and how it echoes the first chapter of Genesis, I came across the following piece which was produced by similar cross-fertilization a few years ago when I was writing some material for New Irish Arts. I didn't use it last week, but thought it was worth another airing. 

And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day", and the darkness he called "night". And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.
Genesis 1:3-5 (ANIV)

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
John 1:5 (RSV)

I’m grown up now… but I’m still afraid of the dark… I pretend that I’m not… But then adults are good at pretending… Children play “let’s pretend” but they’re only practicing for the serious pretending that goes on in adulthood… Pretending that we’re happy… Pretending that we’re confident… Pretending that we like each other… Pretending that we like ourselves…I pretend that I’m not afraid of the dark… But I am… I’m afraid of what hides in the shadows… Murderers and maniacs and monsters…
And memories… Memories of things I’ve done and not done… Memories of things done to me… Dark things… That I pretend never happened… But they did… And in the dark I see them… Black on black… Ready to engulf me… To snuff out the light of my life…
But before I drown in the darkness, I have learned to look for the light… And it is always there… Somewhere… at the flick of a switch or by opening a door, or peering into the night sky, to see a star… A small speck shining across the almost infinite reaches of space… A light that began its journey millions of years before I was born… before my fears began… Echo of a light created by God’s word to banish the darkness… The dawning of the day…



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