Like Corn in the Night

I grew in those seasons like corn in the night . . . Henry David Thoreau

“At two, they’ve grown to half of their full height,” they doctor tells us as our twin boys wriggle and squiggle through their annual appointment.  “It took them two years to grow this much and it will take them the next sixteen years to finish growing.” 
In two years they grew like flowers blossoming in a high-speed video, unfurling, stretching out and up toward the light.
Lying in their cribs at night, they're wrecked, passed out cold in the strangest positions, half-covered, while stuffed animals and binkies flung into the darkness lay scattered across the floor.   They sleep twelve hours a night and science tells us that their growth is fueled in part by this surrender to the long, dark night.
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The natural world is slipping into darkness now , the last leaves are shaken from the trees with a stretch and a quavering yawn as life continues, quieted, in the deep, dark, subterranean layers of the earth.  Earlier and earlier every evening now, I walk the perimeter of our house switching on the lamps that push back the night.  Strategically placed in every corner, they stand tall and thin like toothpicks propping our eyelids open.  Outside the darkness grows, but the bright yellow eyes of our windows glow because we believe there is more to be done; we cannot rest, cannot embrace, willingly, the dark, still silence. 
Maybe we believe, as Parker Palmer suggests, that, “if we are not making noise,. . . nothing good is happening and something must be dying” (89).  We have lost the sense of the value of darkness, lost an awareness that there may be good and important things going on in it of which we are unaware. 
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The butterfly in its cocoon, the cicada asleep in the belly of the world, the child in the womb, all of these and more rely on darkness; in waiting and surrender they're changed into what they will be.  Isn't it possible then that we too might grow in such a night? 

Perhaps we too are only half of what we have yet to become and so let us go, peacefully to our rest, while the great God who spun the night across the wide expanse of the sky, like silk, and who whirled the stars out wide in their orbits, works quietly within us to bring all things into completion.

This post is linked with Imperfect Prose and #TellHisStory.


  1. I love your voice, Kelly, and I'm thrilled that you joined in at #TellHisStory.

    1. Thanks, Jennifer, what fun to be picked to be featured on your blog:) You made my night.

  2. What a beautiful gift of words you have
    yes, may we surrender to His hand

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