The darkness surrounds my little slice of Appalachia this time of year. The same mountains that shelter me from the storms also block the sun when it’s low in the sky leaving only a tiny slice of open sky through which the constellations can look down through. Over The next 30 days the shadows will rule the forests. It will be dark as I leave in the morning and dark when I drive home. But I do have a few days when I’m free to walk in the sunlight. During the last 30 days of the darkness my mind is taken back to a scene from the the 80s Swamp Thing Movie. There’s a scene where Alec (The Swamp Thing’s real name) is held prisoner in a dungeon and is injured. Only a tiny sliver of light shines through the barred window. Being part plant, he stretches out as much as he can to catch the sunshine. Sure it’s just a movie that’s based on a comic book but that one scene had a profound effect on me. The symbolism of reaching for whatever light there is available in order to be made whole should be a universal concept but let me spell it out for you. St. John Chapter 1 teaches us in the first five verses that we are creatures of light. We need that spiritual light to survive. We need the light to be made whole and sometimes we have to reach out a little harder to receive it. Now before you jump on the internet and download the movie let me clear that it’s got some scenes and themes that are not for more sensitive viewers. The nudity and violence including a bare chested Adrienne Barbeau. But when I caught the little red maple in my lens reaching for the sunlight it reminded me of the movie and of course the need to reach out and catch as much of the light as I can.
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