Let me start by saying that I am not afraid of the dark.
That being said… I have atrocious night vision. Permaybehaps from sun damage after living in Florida for so many years. Maybe I was always this way – I honestly don’t recall. It seems to take forever for my eyes to adjust even to dimness, let alone the pitch of black that comes with the deep woods.
But as it stands… I cannot navigate the dark easily.
But I am not afraid of it.
Many people are… many people should be. There are… things… that reside only in the dark. The shadows are their refuge, and they slither out at night. It is maybe boldness… or faith… that I am sheltered from these things. But they exist, whether you believe in them or not.
I killed the engine of my car. And as the lights died away, so did my ability to see. I could hear the sounds of the night. The rushing of the river nearby, the call of the birds, the song of the occasional cricket.
I could also feel. The chill in the air. The pressure that settled around me. That sense of being watched. That judgement of whether I was a threat, or a meal, or nothing more than a passing being.
There was something in the woods, but the flash of the lightening bugs did not reveal it. The tenuous light clinging to the horizon line from a city miles away did not reveal it. The faint, precious glow of by the stars did not reveal it. Only the inherent instinct that we never quite grew out of as we evolved revealed that something was there.
But I am not afraid of the dark.
Because I know without the dark, we would not appreciate the light.