#386 “Don’t Go…”

From Ally  in Chattanooga, Tennessee

Something peaceful yet ominous oozes from the dark nighttime skies of this calm but creepy masterpiece. While the darkness of night is often an object of fear for mankind and a metaphor for death and the great unknown, this is the very place that the wolf often feels most at home. Symbolically and literally he exists where we dare not go- beyond the borders of our comfortable lives which are masked with a fragile illusion of safety. It is the wolf that dares to confront the darkness.

Man has always hated what he does not understand and cannot relate to. Perhaps that is why he has persecuted the wolf with such force. Over centuries he has slaughtered wolves by the millions under delusions of a false threat or an inflated sense of nobility. So while it is we who are afraid of the night, we have seemingly punished the wolf for his untamable wildness. And that is why this illustration brings to mind a poem by Dylan Thomas. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. It’s called…

“Do not go gentle into that good night”

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieve it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


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