We are halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. In the northern hemisphere, the earth is waking, responding to the lengthening days, the beginnings of warmth. We dare to hope for more signs of spring, in the garden, in the sky. They are small and few, but they are there. New buds on branches, still tightly furled. Thawing ice, shrinking patches of snow. Birds frantic and frenetic in their courtship. New babies in barn and fold.
Light has been celebrated at this time of year for many centuries, by many cultures. From Roman candlelight processions in honor of Ceres, to the flames of Imbolc honoring Brigid, to Candlemas and even Groundhog day, we focus on light as the return of the sun becomes perceptible. We peer at shadows (our own and those of large rodents), and make predictions about the weather. Cautious hope is the prevailing mood.
Light is an important theme in my science fiction novelette, “Emancipation,” now available in two chapters on Book View Cafe. A colony in space grapples politically over whether its artificial night is necessary or merely a sentimental attachment to the ways of Earth. Pop over and give it a look.