Picture Us In The Light is an entirely unexpected gift, and if I’ve learned anything so far it’s to not take those for granted. Potent, conscious, heartbreaking and brave, Daniel Cheng’s voice is at the same time halting but beneath that is an understated verve that’s seen him through facing agonizing truths and fears, his family’s and his own, and ultimately the healing that’s come out of it.
I know a little about that “unforgiving light”, I feel it shining through the spaces when I write. Be it the ink on the page or crisp font on the screen, it’s where I’m most unable to lie to myself, to fabricate an alternate storyline, so I don’t. It’s where I go when I need to feel real, a trail to leave behind when I get lost so I can find myself again. And the stuff I’ve found, I’m not proud of but I can get past and move on if I face them. That’s the hard part.
I can’t imagine what it must take to write such a novel, though I know Gilbert and Danny have a couple of things in common, an indomitable spirit and beautiful people in the wings.
I know I share some of that as well, sometimes we see ourselves in the characters we read and it offers a burgeoning hope that we, too, can be moved to some small metamorphosis after a tumultuous phase of distress and uncertainty.
2 responses to “The Unforgiving Light”
“It’s where I go when I need to feel real, a trail to leave behind when I get lost so I can find myself again.”
This bit, Devina! You said it perfectly! You’re right. We may not be proud of some of the things we may find; but they’re there to remind us that although we were once those things, here we are now – we have triumphed over them.
Exactly. It’s important to keep this in mind as it serves a reminder of how far we’ve come. I’ve been rooting around for this quote I scribbled down some time ago … it kind of fits with this train of thought:
“If I quit now, I will soon be back to where I started. And when I started I was desperately wishing to be where I am now.” – Anonymous