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Life, Home, Family, Love

Kandace Creel Falcón
August 11, 2009

At this point in my life, I have been thinking a lot about the issues of home, numbers, reading, writing and legacies. For instance, how is it possible that children born today will only know the century containing 2000 years? I find it rather unfathomable to think about how even the 1990s are foreign concepts, the so passé twentieth century! But as someone who has definitely not been on this earth for long, but experienced most of those years in the twentieth century these numbers just feel weird. What did the Aztecs think would happen in the 2000s? Did they have maps and star charts that could tell them about this "future"?

I saw lightning bugs the other night for the first time since I've been in Minnesota. How long have these creatures been roaming this earth? Five summers and only one bug flitting through summer night air with a light in its butt. Bugs that every summer in Kansas my brother and I would torture by capturing them and holding them hostage, that is if they even survived our mad grabs in the dark, in glass jars for their "future", soon release.

What does home mean to you? All I can think of is lightning bugs. They are reminders of seasonal cycles, of the trips my family endured via a long two way highway road from Albuquerque where the skies are pink and orange at dusk to Kansas where wheat waves in the wind. How ten hours on the road were mostly agonizing but also excellent opportunities for reading several books. But home means family, even if you are miles and miles apart. I've never, in my recollection seen a lightening bug in New Mexico, but I often wished I had, so much so that now my memories are unreliable now I see them coming out to play in our backyard even if they were never actually there.

I ask the mothers of nature to forgive me for the souls of the lightning bugs I unwillingly, accidentally harmed in my attempts to capture your beauty I took it away. When my hands came away from the jars in which I kept you captive and my fingers were covered in a green-yellow dust, I am sorry. It is now that I know the harm of my selfish ways. But fear not, your short lives and early deaths were not in vain, rather they now serve as the important metaphors of my life, home, family, love.