Wednesday, April 1, 2015

blue shadows stretch away

blue shadows stretch away 
from the wrought iron table
to slide up the wall

On a cold but sunny spring day, shadows are everywhere. Bluish shadows lean away from the feet of the black wrought iron table and bend up the wall, creating patterns of dark and light. 
          We say, "the table casts a shadow," but nothing really throws its shadow. The process is totally passive and unintentional. Something opaque stands between rays of light and a surface impenetrable by light, creating a reverse projection. An absence appears to be a presence, an intangible apparition appears solid, a mirror image seems to move and shape shift while the object that created it stands still, or the dark dopplegänger follows its conjoined twin in motion.
          Unlike Peter Pan, as long as we have a body, we cannot lose our shadow, no matter how far it shrinks or stretches away from us. That is, as long as there is enough light to generate a shadow. 
          Light and darkness, paired opposites, both insubstantial. Yet tiny hunks of light can nudge a huge hunk of metal floating in space, and dark energy seems to be the mysterious force driving the expansion of our entire universe. 
          Photons are named for the Greek word for light, so I propose that we name dark energy, erebusons, meaning "deep darkness, shadow," after Erebus, the primordial Greek god of darkness, born out of Chaos.

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