Goethe’s final words: “More light.” Ever since we crawled out of that primordial slime, that’s been our unifying cry, “More light.” Sunlight. Torchlight. Candlight. Neon, incandescent lights that banish the darkness from our caves to illuminate our roads, the insides of our refrigerators. Big floods for the night games at Soldier’s field. Little tiny flashlights for those books we read under the covers when we’re supposed to be asleep. Light is more than watts and footcandles. Light is metaphor. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet. Rage, rage against the dying of the light. Lead kindly light amid the encircling gloom, lead thou me on, the night is dark and I am far from home, lead thou me on. Arise, shine, for thy light has come. Light is knowledge, light is life, light is light.
Thank you, Casey, who led me to this powerful little speech (see below – and watch the clip) from the TV series Northern Exposure, which Jeff said is a great great show. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a chance to see any of it. Maybe later!
Chris (the character) quotes, among others, Psalm 119:105; Dylan Thomas’s “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night”; John Henry Newman’s “The Pillar of the Cloud” and Isaiah 60:1.