Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Some things can take up a special residence in your mind and stay there forever. At some point, those things become symbolic of deeper meanings and become a way of identifying a vast array of specifics. Like, I think of music and different songs as a sort of soundtrack to the pieces of one's life. Or how a phrase said in passing can become the basis of an individuals daily mantra. I think of almanacs to describe the past and progression for one's life. Ghosts represent all those yesterdays that have come and gone, haunting your mind. The one that seems to matter more and more as of late are the fireflies.

Growing up in the South, Summer was always a time of long days under long, blue skies packed with whatever you and your group of friends could fill them with. The nights, despite their hazy, humid thickness always seemed to be of it's own individual wonders. To me, it was always the fireflies. The way in which they became stars against their own night sky of the trees and fields fascinated me. Catching several to place in a jar and watching as they illuminated in a soft, yellow or green glow was one of those summer wonders you grasp as being magical and never think of the hard science behind it. Being a child and fireflies being part of nature, you never think of these things disappearing, of leaving and going away. Then you grow and you lose sight of those very things that seemed magical. Fireflies, like those days and moments, seem to be disappearing. In drawing comparisons, fireflies are disappearing due to over development and minimizing and outright destroying of their habitat. Man made light and light pollution also play a role in the decline of the firefly population.

The importance of this, the comparison, is fireflies tend to represent the people, places, moments and intangible things of significance to me anymore. It seems that these things go away with greater frequency now. Losing what's important to you never seems to get any lighter in weight, a heaviness that is constant. No matter how much you tell yourself to hold on, no matter how many reminders, it always seems to pass. Hearts break, bodies give and yet the mind holds true to those things that were better then. Every day passes and turns into weeks, then months, then years, taking you further and further away from those summer evenings filled with fireflies and your own night sky and the little stars you could collect in a jar.

The harsh truth of this is that I have probably served as the one over developing due to my own over thinking/analyzing every little thing. My myriad of issues and detachments serving as the man made pollution that sends the "fireflies" away. As Summer gave way to Autumn, the fireflies were confined to the magics of warm nights at the end of long days. Is that some sort of Raymond Chandler like symbolism? I hate to believe that I am in the Autumn of my seasons. Or am I only there mentally and spiritually? If so, does this mean that if I can make through the Winter that I get another Spring? Another Summer?

As a man, you tend to realize that the halcyon days of your youth are awarded retroactively. They serve as bittersweet reminders and as lessons to impart upon your own children. Some things, like I said, become symbolic. Fireflies, for me, are symbolic of those  people, places, moments and intangible things of significance. They hold a place in my heart where my love and devotion resides. I read where at some point fireflies will be gone. I hope that isn't true. I hope the same holds true for all they represent to me. I will always want another Summer night filled with fireflies. Both real and in what they stand for in my heart and mind.

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