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Fireflies At Close of Day

ZD BrentonA drowsy-dusk summer sunset crimsons the Ozark landscape with evening hues, washing the day away without remorse. This is my home.

Easy warm-humid, insects buzzing, hovering helicopter wings beating, leaving skin itching throughout one's dreams.

Fireflies dance exotic constellations across the ever-deepening darkness. Patterns change as they flit here and there; recharging, flickering, no rhyme nor reason -- on, off, off, on, on -- Tiny torches in need of new batteries. This is the beginning of an Ozark summer.

Careless children capture fragile beads of lights in glass jars, releasing behind locked bedroom doors. Mothers do not want to know! Thank God it's not a school night.

How can we preserve these fireflies-in-the-palm-of-a-child-in-the-backyard-at-sunset memories for future generations?

Begin by Illuminating the darkness of our stagnant mindsets -- everything will go on and on in spite of what we do to the earth. It's like telling a boy who forgets to poke holes in the cover of his bug bottle, "It's okay. Those creepy crawlers don't need to breathe. Just collect more of 'em tomorrow." Even small children know that an action leads to a reaction, a consequence, a result; whether positive or negative, whether good or bad, whether helpful or a hindrance.

Scientists say that fireflies are becoming endangered. Their lights are dimming, fading into history, flicker, flicker, off, out . . . into the past where nonfiction evolves over time until it becomes legend, myth, fantasy.

The firefly soars through the galaxy, faster than the speed of light, illuminating all of everything that ever was, is and will be; except it is merely an illusion. It is only a memory within a universal mind. On, off, off, on, off . . .  Did it ever dance about the yard on damp, dark summer evenings in small towns where children ran free, bare feet blazing through wet grass, wild, untamed; chasing dreams into the sleepy-hued close of day?

Fireflies In Ravens Hand
A Firefly Lights the Imagination of a Child