Island Blog 82 Light and Dark

Sunlight and Shadows

In the sunlight everything changes and not just the light, although light is always good.  But what about the other side of light?

Is it ‘dark’?

Well, I wonder…….

In the life I lived as Island Wife, and the short wifely part before the Island came to me and I to it, I learned about the circles.

Circles of life and death, or dark and light, of hope, humour, faith lost and found and lost and found and round and round we go again.

And again.

In the very olden times, long before Christ, long before me, people were here.  People who lived and loved and lost and found, just like we do.  In ancient times, ancient rites of passage, the circle of life was felt, sometimes sharply, sometimes like a warm and gentle breeze.  The taste of it was on every tongue, it’s sound in every ear as days, seasons, months, years and generations rose and fell and rose again.  Circles, carved into stones marked the way over mountains, through thickly wooded valleys and across wastelands.

Sometimes I meet a stranger and just know that his or her circle has just bumped into mine, overlapped, even, and we speak as old friends.  It has little to do with anything.  I may know nothing about them, nor they about me.  We may not appear to share very much common ground, nor life experience, and yet we both feel it, this connection, and we see it in each other’s eyes, as we touch on another’s very soul.

Coincidence, is a modern word.  Not one that any of our wise old, land/sea-living forebears would ever have felt in their mouth.  Minds knew little about their own mathematical design, but were honoured and accepted as a vital part of every person, from young child to old crone.  People were listened to and heard in the quiet sway of life’s sweet turning.

Oh, I am not saying life was a breeze, far from it, but inside any hardship a man or woman would take their place and work it for the best.  Music and dancing, laughter and conversation, sharing and visiting, all these played an essential part.  We, in this life, have crowded our heads with our own loneliness.  We have filled the air with raucous pings and beeps that drown out the birds.  We walk with headphones on looking straight ahead towards our goal.  We miss the ‘gentle.’

But, the good news is that we can change.  Not as a collective, but as individuals.  Wherever we live.  And, if our life is slowly taking us further and further away from all that we know we need, we can change it.

Trust me, I’ve done it.

One day years back, we arrived at the ferry a little late, a little fraught, our long journey in our minds and mine full of what I might have forgotten to pack.  The ferry was delayed.  Murphy was out that day, for we had deadlines, as the others in the big queue may also have had.  As we walked up and down the line of cars, we could feel the irritation, the frustration.  People sighed and tutted and kept checking their watches, their mobiles.  Suddenly, through the open window I heard a fiddle.  We went to investigate.  A group of musicians were playing a jig and people started to dance along the pier.  Car doors opened, people came out with their mouths open.

And we danced.  As the ferry rolled in, passengers lined the decks, smiling and pointing.

And us?  Well, we had become the music and, as we circled and spun, not one of us remembered the delay.

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