[Rough Draft]

A weblog about god, doubt, insomnia, culture, baseball

9.07.2004

when the lights go out

when i was little i liked it when the lights would go out. scurrying about for candles, creating a little flickering cocoon in which to read b/tw the silence and the sound of a storm lashing the house. it wasn't an adventure so much as it was a drawing in. the wagons were circled. all the good stuff: in here; all the bad: out there.

tonight i learned that as a father i don't like it so much. the lights were out here in oxford for maybe 20 minutes, but instead of being @ rest i was on guard. there's no storm out, but the sounds were ominous to my paternal ears. sirens seemed closer, neighbors' voices were threatening somehow. ellie's cries, when she woke to find her little nightlight inexplicably absent, sounded more urgent and stilted. i wondered whether she could breathe. renee' finally went in w/ some milk to rock her back to sleep.

so what changed? why does something that used to be so fun now conjure images of drifters that truman capote would be proud of? maybe it's b/c, even though i know that renee' and i were right outside the door in the dark, i wasn't sure that ellie knew it. i can't even begin to think how god must feel to watch his children bang about in darkness. in isaiah, god promises he'll be w/ us in the fire, in high water, in the dark. but how do we know? the only answer i have what renee said after the lights were back on: how does ellie know we're here? b/c when it was dark we went in to her. we showed her.

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