There is a certain point of time in the day where the inky dark of the night leaves nothing left for the eyes to see, save for whatever stars are left. In a few places, though, you could find places where even the earth itself was stained with stars of its own. The best place to find them were near airports, factories, or lonely roads: where there were just numerous enough to see, but didn’t crowd each other out like they did in the cities. Glittering red ones, white ones, sickly greens and yellows, too, all scattered across the earth. Little flashes winking in and out of sight if you watched carefully, and with enough patience. Sometimes, even, these lights would fly: they’d join each other in patterns, some loose and faint, and others following each other as thought they were part of some great synchronized dance, like a team of swimmers weaving across the dark. Others arranged themselves in rows along the ground, like bright sentinels, to guide the others across and away from the earth. I liked thinking of them as though they were stars trying to get back into the sky. Like they had fallen down to the ground, and were trying desperately to rejoin their friends that looked down on them from above. Maybe they felt out of place, being so few and so far between, when their friends were so bright and crowded together in the night sky. Maybe they knew that being on the ground wasn’t a good way to live. Earthbound, grounded, and unable to reach a place where they felt like they wouldn’t feel so trapped. And every day the lights in the sky faded out of sight, and the lights on the ground would lose their luster, dejected; only to regain their shine as soon as night fell, and twilight renewed their hopes with glittering determination. The lights would reappear, rebuilding their fragile efforts, redoubling their faith that eventually things would become better, and that things would not stay the same. Even today my own hopes stay with these lights, which made every effort, every day, as though none of their work went in vain. I miss them.