This was a piece of writing that I had written in the middle of last year. And I think it actually comes from A Brief for the Defence by Jack Gilbert and I had misheard the original line which was “We must risk delight.” I don’t think I actually like the prose of this piece that I had written but it felt like it fit very well into a post apocalyptic setting.
We must risk the light. We must. That is going to be our only salvation.
We must risk the light, that we see through barred grates, trapped down here in the sewers.
We must risk the light. The light to take us back to who we were.
We must risk the light. The light that might burn us in its whiteness and starkness, in the truth it reveals.
We must risk the light, the light that emerges out of darkness, brings us out from under darkness.
So we have emerged. Under the light. Into a moonlit sky. There were not many stars that night. Only scattered dots in the sky, like scattered pins.
We must risk the light. We have risked it and we have come through. But we have come through to nothing. An emptiness. There was nowhere to go, not for us who emerged into the light. Can we go back, crawl back into the dark? We could not, not after we had seen the light. We were forever changed by it. The light…
We must risk the light. We will keep risking for the light. We cluster, huddle just beyond the grate, so that we do not block out the light. We wait for more of us to emerge. We know they would. The draw of the light is irresistible.
We must risk the light. We must. As we huddle together, sometimes the light goes out of one of us. Extinguished as life’s ember burns out. We pray then. Pray that the light is reborn onto the sky, as a star. Perhaps that’s why there are not many stars in the sky, yet. Not enough light reborn onto the sky.