Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise.
Blackbird fly Blackbird fly
Into the light of the dark black night.
A bird with broken wings, black feathers, yearning to break free. Singing into the desolate darkness. That paradoxical refrain, “…into the light of a dark black night.” An image comes to mind of a sliver of moon or winking stars behind the clouds, the slightest glimmer of something more.
I’ve always loved that song. I’ve read it’s about the civil rights movement and some say it’s about South Africa. It reminds others of the afterlife, breaking free. Regardless of the interpretation, it’s a song of pain and of hope. It’s a song of testing and overcoming. I hear it and it fills me with the idea that I too can courageously fly.
As I have moved through the pain and brokenness of divorce, this song has resonated. There were moments when I doubted the light would ever come. When the agony was visceral and all I saw was darkness. Friends assured me it would get better, but I didn’t believe them—I couldn’t believe them. There was no room in my heart or head for hope. So my friends held that hope for me. And slowly, so slowly, I realized they were right. There would be a moment or a comment or a song that offered the slightest glimmer of light. Of breath. Of something more. These glimmers began to multiply and pile up and glow and reflect all over me and one day I realized I was standing in the Light. Full Light that cast out the darkness. I looked around and stood up straight and took a deep breath. And I took wing.
I’m not suggesting that all is rosy and life is perfect. Nope. I’m recognizing the miracle that I’m still breathing and laughing and crying and living. That I fall down and I have the strength to get back up. That through this season, my wings were broken yet I am healing.
Part of that healing for me is writing again. And part of flying for me now is sharing my writing with you. This terrifies me. It’s one thing to pour out your heart and your brain into your laptop with secure passwords. It’s a completely different thing to put it out there for folks to read. Here’s my baby…do you think my baby is pretty? But somehow, I feel like it’s time. Thank you for being part of this journey.
I believe that no matter how dark our surroundings, there is always the slightest glimmer to be found. We all have our blackbird moments, and broken wings or not, the Light finds us. We limp our way towards it and we learn to fly again.