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Living in the Dark

329 words


How living in the dark can be illuminating
by Dianne Roth



I live in the dark. I have painted my house with deep, rich, dark colors. I have lots of lamps with low wattage bulbs shedding pools of delicious light wherever I need it.

My living room is rosy-brown. I let light spill over me as I read or knit or quilt. Quiet music fills the darkened corners and a candle allows the shadows to dance.

My bedroom is emerald green. It invites the view from my garden in through the French doors. An old, handmade quilt gives the illusion that I am sleeping in a flower bed.

My kitchen cupboards are the darkest green you can buy. Up in the corners it almost looks black. Little lamps spill light in the sink and onto the stove where I prepare my meals. When company comes for dinner, they say it looks like no one is home. I watch and open the door to greet the wary.

When I am away, timers turn on the lights so I am greeted with cozy spaces when I return home.

I live in the dark and in pools of light in more ways than one. When it comes to the gruesome realities of life, I live in the dark and only allow small pools of information to illuminate my life.

I know we are at war. I know there are casualties, both here and there. I see the faces of the children, all the children. What I do not allow into my life are the details. Details paralyze me. So, I live in the dark.

Each morning I give about 10 minutes to the headlines in the local paper. I must know what is going on. I cannot hide from life. My 10 minutes informs me, it does not paralyze me. Then, in my cozy home and with a hopeful heart, I live and write and protest, working to turn my privilege into social justice, hoping to make the world a better place.


Dianne Roth is a teacher, mother, grandmother, and freelance writer. She lives in Oregon.



Last updated on October 8, 2012