I knew the title, A Light Last Seen, almost before I knew anything else about this novel. I don't know where the title came from. I just knew it. But I was well along with the writing before the dragonflies were added to the story. Dragonflies appear in A Light Last Seen at important points in Jaynie Highsmith's life ~ beginning on that fateful day when young Jaynie met Ruth Berry.
This past summer when I was writing A Light Last Seen, we had an abundance of dragonflies. Each day on my walk, as I was stretching my legs and airing my brain cells and musing over the story-in-progress, I was surrounded, almost swarmed, by dragonflies. It was strange because I could hardly remember ever seeing dragonflies along my walk in prior years. But every day, there they were. More and more of them. And I decided they must belong in my story - or rather, Jaynie Highsmith's story, and I was slow to get the message. So I introduced them into the story and then decided I should look up the symbolism around them. Every online entry was similar - change, transformation, self-realization, light and joy by going beyond your current sense of self...
Perfect. Exactly what A Light Last Seen was about. Jaynie's story is also about forgiveness and becoming one's whole self but you can't get there without transformation and faith, so - dragonflies.
It amazes me how we are often oblivious to all that surrounds us and instead focus on the obvious. Perhaps it's even comforting to hold the obvious close to us rather than to risk change and failure by going beyond our comfort zones. I almost missed the importance of the dragonflies - even while I was being overwhelmed by the abundance of them. But I'm so glad they didn't give up. We should never give up on things that are important to us. And Jaynie ~ regardless of flaws ~ is persistent. And, despite her hardships and even her apparent cynicism, she is an essential optimist, blessed by a great friendship and a strong spirit.
Here is a picture of one of the dragonflies from this past summer. They moved so fast that I couldn't get pictures and one day as I was returning from my walk, this one was posed on my sidewalk and I snagged the shot.
Thank you for accompanying me, A Light Last Seen, and the dragonflies on this journey. You are much appreciated and I hope you enjoy A Light Last Seen.