Animals at night again, its funny how these things appear from nowhere.
One of my favourite poems, perhaps my favourite poem, is ‘The Thought Fox‘ by Ted Hughes. Its perfect for nights when trees sway in the wind, no stars can been seen, wind blows down the chimney and everything else is quiet except you sense something is there. The opening two verse say:-
I imagine this midnight moment’s forest:
Something else is alive
Beside the clock’s loneliness
And this blank page where my fingers move.
So I’m awake at 3.30am and can’t sleep because I feel stuff going on in the darkness, stuff moving and rustling about in the undergrowth, stuff that I can’t quite capture but I want to capture or at least catch a glimpse of.
Bed is going to have to wait, I want to see what’s going on.
There are different images that come to mind here in the wakefulness.
The first one is from Genesis, the earth formless and empty, darkness over the surface of the deep and the spirit of God hovering over the waters.
Chaos and coldness but the promise of good things to come?
The next is of Jacob alone in the darkness.
Alone that is until he ends up wrestling a man all night, a man who ends up blessing Jacob and changing his to Israel because he has ‘struggled with God and with human beings’ and has overcome’.
The final image is of Bruce Springsteen singing ‘Badlands’, which is probably my favourite Springsteen song.
‘Lights out tonight,
Trouble in the heartland,
Got a head on collision,
Smashin’ in my guts, man,
I’m caught in a cross fire,
That I don’t understand…..‘
Wrestling in the darkness again and waiting for things to turn around, for things you sense but can’t yet see to appear from the undergrowth, wrestling with God and humans and not letting go, getting your hip wrenched and a limp for the rest of your days as a result.
That seems to be the way of it.
Then in keeping with the tone of this post H____ wakens from her slumber upstairs, goes to the bathroom and makes her way back to bed. Suddenly we are both awake at 4.30am on a Friday morning…
‘The window is starless still; the clock ticks,
The page is printed.’