Light Work

Photo by Mathew Thomas on

I don’t know what this is. I just found it in a journal after writing this morning, and it’s sort of a musing. I wrote it a few years ago. It felt relevant this morning. As we move out of November and into December, with some of our shortest days of the year. Also, with a year that is certain to go down in history, coming to a ‘calendar close,’ we begin to reflect on how the year will be remembered, what part did we ‘play in it,’ how did we make sense of it, and, hopefully, how do we grow from it? I was supposed to have born on Saint Patrick’s Day and with an Irish grandfather would have been Patrick, if that occurred. I came a bit early and obtained the name Luke, after the biblical disciple and author of one of the four accounts in the New Testament of the Christian bible. (My family was Roman Catholic). The word/name “Luke,” means ‘bright,’ ‘bringer of light,’ ‘the one born at dawn,’ which is interesting because dawn is when I write, and it’s my favorite time of day. It’s also interesting. It is commonly accepted that Luke was a ‘doctor,’ by trade; however, he also was the first ‘icon painter,’ of the period. In the Roman Catholic tradition he is the patron saint of artists, physicians, bachelors, surgeons, students and butchers. Names always fascinate me. I often wonder with a different name, would we be different people in any way(s). A name the first gift we receive in this life, given to us by our parents or loved ones. In any event, a lot of my musing in this piece is about my name. Fittingly, about how one ‘brings light to a world,’ ‘about arts place in that,’ ‘about writing,’ ‘and about doing so at first light.’ I guess my name is fitting in that degree. I just found it was fitting, in a year, where so much time was spent in isolation, in quiet thought, going inward. This week being a holiday week, where many will be alone (some for the first time), it’s a reminder that we all are part of something bigger and to continue to remember to shine light on ourselves and the world, as each day reminds us, there will be a period of darkness and every day that darkness is always followed by a dawn. New light is always on it’s way..

Light Work

Years from now, these mornings will feel like ghosts. That is the reality of everything,
eventually it does become this haunting presence inside us.

The winter I lived in the apartment where the lock on the door did not work, above
the financial advisor office on Main Street in a town with a one street downtown.

Every morning the blinking pizza place with what almost seems like an Arabic name
viewed out of my window as I sat in the main room on the leather couch writing

dreading first light, as it meant time to leave the muses and put on my work clothes.
Waking up, hemmed in emotion, creating something as the first act of my day.

Percolated in a quiet act. The ice covered trees whipping a strong north wind at the windows.
Will I be haunted by the idea I was a person who never asked for love then.

or will my past loves have grown to be grainy. Perhaps, I will be more fond of my fragile quiet
self that still held ‘serendipity’ to be his favorite word, what is more wonderful than ‘an unexpected pleasurable surprise?”

I have this name. It means ‘giver of light.’ Perhaps that is why I loved the darkened mornings
as they grew into light. Maybe I saw myself emerging and blending into that darkness, making one solitary day.

Perhaps I felt something as it felt me. It was important like the feeling made in a simple gesture like someone purposefully rubbing against your coat to try to get your attention.

I wonder if poems will still be breathed in my ear and make everything inside me hush.
Will other things shoosh me? Or will there be other vices lulling me into hypnosis?

The cozy life of a phantom existence always singing about the music of the night.
As the ‘bearer of light,’ I wonder if I will ever hear my name and just hear, “Luke?”

Or will there be a need to live in the shadows, so I can live true to the meaning of my name
bringing dawn each day. If I did not do this, would there be a Luke? Or is identity stolen when the origins of one’s given name are not taken seriously?

Some things melt before they are memories. I quite like this quiet habit of awakening in the dark
to bring light and poems into the world. It gives me the opportunity to be the father to something.

Besides I am certain no one will argue that in the time that this occurred,
perhaps light is the most important birth needed each day, in this era that will be remembered for the darkness of the times.

Hopefully, history will tell, I did what was needed and brought dawns to a world,
where the feeling was of being left on a trail blindfolded trying to find the path, that guides one back to a world of where darkness always finds a dawn.

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