To give birth in Italian is dare alla luce, or to give to the light.
The cigarette tasted good. Its ash floated away on a wind. My legs dangled out of my large window, feet hovering over the flat expanse of roof that stretched outward and ahead of me. Just beyond where the rooftop ended, you could glimpse the spread of green over the campus grounds. Berlin’s chilly spring mornings. Crisp.
The dorms remained silent, but I was awake. I lit another. My mind was a sea of images and letters, scattered words making up a fragile thesis…the words often flew faster than my hands could type them. And my body tired long before my brain could transpose thought to paper.
“Damn.” Some ash had grazed my thigh on its way down to meet my feet, a brief, sharp reprieve from the mental rambling of my thesis. While my mind was swirling with mismatched letters, dark yielded to dawn.
Bursts of brilliant color stretched out and lit the sky. An odd sight in a city. A blaze of orange vaulted across the horizon with hues of pinkish-red contrasting against creamy clouds. Stars faded to invisibility as the fiery sun broke from its slumber. My pupils receded, taking in the splendor of a new day.
My phone buzzed. So early?
It was my sister in Seattle. Her baby had just been born.
I chuckled at the pathetic fallacy of reality before responding, “Dare alla luce. Your baby boy has been born with a magnificent Berlin sunrise.”
The message I received some days later has never left me without a smile. The imprint was unobtrusive, yet powerful, and I was happy to be part of an integral piece of my nephew’s life.
“We named him Luca.”