Short Story: The Light of the Moon

Moon was born on Earth in the age of darkness, six trillion years after her brother, Sun.

Sun, born during the age of light, was blaringly domineering. He convinced himself he was greater than his illumination-challenged sister. When Moon was very small, Sun told her that she was made from the darkness around them and like the surrounding darkness, was meant to be still and quiet.

“How easily you blend into the darkness.  Follow me Shadow, otherwise you’ll fade into the abyss” said Sun.

This theory did not explain Moon’s exploding energy, her need to be seen.  She didn’t understand how she could be made to be still and quiet when there was a burning fire in her.  Moon thought, for sure, there was a way for her to be like Sun.

Moon, secretly, wanted to scream out, ‘I am not shadow! My name is Moon and I will shine.’

Moon replied, “Can’t you teach me to shine? I’m sure there is light somewhere in me, I’m sure.”

“One cannot be taught to shine Moon,” said Sun.  “It is all in the birth.  My birth was during the time of light, progress and beauty and yours was during the time of darkness and oblivion,” said Sun.

“But I can try, I can try,” pleaded Moon.

“No!” yelled Sun. “There can never be light in dark, never! How terribly dim you are, just follow me Shadow, and keep quiet.”

Moon, secretly, wanted to scream out, “I am not shadow! My name is Moon and I will shine.”

But Moon had neither the courage nor the confidence and so she held her tongue and followed Sun.

Sun and Moon passed light-years roaming space and visiting planets. Sun would often send Moon on nugatory tasks and Moon would end up roaming alone. There was never a twinkle or glimmer of anything other than Sun.  There was no place Moon could escape Sun’s rays and with such dominant evidence, Moon could not deny Sun’s apparent superiority.

“I am no longer shadow. I am Moon and I am shining.”

On another one of Sun’s routine errands, something strange happened to Moon.  She was lost. For the first time, Moon was able to steal a moment away from Sun.  When she looked back all she saw was darkness.

“Where am I,” wondered Moon, “have I faded into the abyss?”

Moon, letting time pass, drifted.  She drifted until she bumped into Darkness.

“Oh! Excuse me, Darkness. I did not see you there,” said Moon.

“It’s quite alright,” responded the darkness, “but I am not Darkness.”

“Of course you are. You are not Sun and there is nothing else in existence,” said Moon.

“Of course there is. I am Star.”

And with that, Star illuminated.

“You’re beautiful,” marveled Moon.

“Yes, and so are you,” replied Star.

“I am only darkness, Star. I was born in the darkness. I am only darkness.”

“You are partly darkness, dear” said Star.  “And while your darkness is beautiful, sometimes life requires a little light.”

“That is what I am saying, Star.  I have no light,” said Moon.

“Of course you do, everything has light.  I can help you find it, if you’d like?” said Star.

“Really?  Yes please!” exclaimed Moon.

And so Star helped Moon search for her light.  Moon thought Star knew the place to find light.  They searched and searched.  Star and Moon searched for so long and so hard that Moon began to lose hope, wondering when Star would find the light. Despite the hardship Moon persisted. She was determined to find her light.

Finally, Moon realized that the light that Star was talking about was already there. Inside of Moon.  Star said that everything had light and all Moon had to do was find her own light. As Moon’s confidence rose, so did her light. She was illuminated. Not like the light from Sun or Star. It was a light that only Moon could shine.

Moon and Star set off to find Sun (which did not take long, following the light of Moon).  Moon was eager to show Sun that she is more than darkness and oblivion.  Sun hardly recognized Moon, until she spoke.

“I am no longer shadow. I am Moon and I am shining.”

Humbled by Moon and Star’s radiance, Sun set into darkness. Moon and Star reigned high in space and Earth for many light-years.  Finally Moon said, “I miss it Star, I miss the beauty of the dark.”

Not wanting Moon to neglect any part of herself, Star suggested to Moon, “Won’t we find Sun and let him shine for a time, while we enjoy the dark and when his day is done we will shine in the night.”

Moon and Star faded back into the darkness to find Sun.

When they found him, Moon and Sun talked about the different types of light. About the importance of light and dark.  Moon explained how the light of the Sun is different from the light of the Moon and how they are both beautiful.  Moon asked Sun to share the dark and light with her. So grateful to Moon’s proposal, Sun accepted it with a beaming smile and from that time on, Sun and Moon alternated between light and dark.