Sometimes the world is a river 
of darkness thrust behind a greater 
dark. Sometimes the world has forgotten 
what light is or what it feels like— 
A raven crows in the north 
and changes into a needle of balsam, 
so he can float upon the waters and be 
reborn in that kingdom where the stars
and moon and sun have been held
hostage. Prometheus steals fire
from the gods, carrying it back
to earth in a reed. It seems so easy 
to walk into a room, feel for a switch 
in the dark with our fingers, click 
a flashlight on. High in the mountains, 
nuns roll sheets of wax and honeycomb 
into tapers the faithful can light at their 
own altars— Think of the other
stories about the ones who break
into heaven to hide a stone 
fruit or sweetmeat in their mouths:
what they risked for us to gain a world 
without shadows, rooms in which we 
live out our ordinary, everyday lives. 

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