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The Very First Night Light

Friday, November 27th, 2015 1:28 pm by shirlala

Once upon a time at the very, very beginning, when the seasons changed for the very, very first time,  everything in creation paid very close attention.

It was just round this time of year when Bear noticed that the Sun’s strong beam went down earlier than usual.  ”It’s a little colder today,” said Bear to Elephant.

“Yes it is,” agreed Elephant, “We should sit a little closer to each other today so that we stay warm!”

And that night Elephant sat a little closer to Bear.  They shared a hot cocoa and there was something special about its chocolatey goodness.

The next eve Elephant remarked, “Look how Sun is going down earlier and earlier!” Then, Tree pointed out that “the nights are get darker and darker” and Waterfall jumped in to say, “and longer and longer.”

“I know! Let’s light a candle tonight!” said Tiger excitedly.   Monkey agreed and she ran to get their favorite colorful candle which they lit together.

That night they sat together in warmth and a little candle light. They shared another hot cocoa and mmmm, if it wasn’t just a little more delicious when they shared it together.

The next night, Sun went down even earlier and it soon became even darker. “Let’s light two candles tonight!” suggested Chicken, and that night they huddled close with the light of two candles. And of course, hot cocoa. With extra marshmallows which were extra delicious.

The next night arrived even earlier and so they lit a third candle.  And every night following, they added one more candle to brighten up the very long and dark wintery nights.  On the eighth night, the darkest yet, they gathered for hugs and hot cocoa, marshmallows and maybe even a touch of whipped cream.  By the nightlight of their candles, they told their favorite stories. They sang their favorite songs. They played night time hide and seek until it was finally time for bed.  And they slept easily and dreamt golden dreams all through the longest night of the year.

The very next evening, Mountain couldn’t help but notice that the sun lingered just a bit before the nighttime Stars began their twinkle dance. “Perhaps tonight, we need only seven candles,” suggested Mountain. “Yes, that sounds like a good idea” agreed Cricket.  And that night they lit only seven.  The next evening, the sun dazzled in the sky for even longer and they lit only 6 candles.  As the season changed and the days grew longer once again Elephant, Tiger, Monkey, Rabbit, Chicken, Cricket and all of their friends lit fewer and fewer candles.

And to this day, every winter when the days grow short and the nights long, we shine our Night Light to illuminate the darkness.

-based on a winter solstice folk story
Adaptation by Shira Kline (c) ShirLaLa 2013

image from “NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day”


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