Don’t let the sun go down…

I’ve just got back from walking the dogs in the top field, giving them one last opportunity to burn off their energy before we are confined to toilet duty by the tractor til morning.

They raced through the stream and let their momentum carry them up the steep slope, until they gradually slowed and then stopped, pretending to sniff for rabbits, but in reality they were surreptitiously catching their breath!

And then they were off, first left, then under the gate and away!

I grinned and followed them, giving them a few moments of freedom before whistling them back.

As they hurled themselves through space to be the first to come back (which was a first in itself), I turned and watched the sun begin its downward descent behind the hills, its orange light illuminating the horizon. As hilltops and sun came ever closer, it seemed for a moment that there was no distinction between earth and sky, that those who stood on distant slopes were surely consumed by that great ball of fire.

And then the brilliant light faded, and instead of feeling regret that I didn’t have my camera to capture such wonder, instead of cajoling the dogs to step aside from their canine existence and share the sight with me, I found myself thinking about every b-grade horror movie I watched in my teens. You know, the one where the protagonist has to reach the spooky castle / haunted house / manor by sunset, where he (never she!) has to race the setting the sun.

And I found myself thinking that no matter what frightens us, no matter what has power over us, during the day we can, if we choose, hold it at bay. There are people to distract us, things to do, chores that need doing … and light to banish even the darkest shadow.

But when the light fades, our fears creep forward, slowly, slowly, slowly … until they surround us. And there they wait until the shadows become the darkness.

And at that point I confess that I fled from the setting sun, calling the dogs after me as I walked a little too quickly down the hillside, clipping their leads on at the stream and made full speed for the house, telling myself that the steps I could hear were my own.

And now I am curled up on the sofa feeling rather foolish, refusing to draw the curtains against the ever-encroaching dusk as that will be an admission that I was getting up close and personal with some bricks…

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One response to this post.

  1. Glad it’s not just me.

    I’m okay so long as I can at least hear whether a mad axeman from the crypt is near. And what with a wind up torch that doesn’t hold its charge and needing to turn the very loud genny off in the night I do seem to lose my grip on reality regularly in the dark!

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