The light dances away from the sun in waves and particles. It shoots into the atmosphere and blazes down to the surface of the lake in my backyard. Bouncing, jubilant little waves catch it and toss it back at the sky and into my eyes, making the sun's reflection roll and twist in front of me.
But when the light hits the wooden dock, it ricochets back like a ping pong ball, no dancing involved. The dock is flat, hard, firm. The light hits it and leaves it at a perfect angle without fail, revealing the textures of the grain and the tired faces of the aging boards. No distortion, one direction.
Then I notice something. No wait, it's nothing. As the light hits me, it splinters. It can't go through. It bounces off of me first, never reaching the smooth wood of the floating dock. No light touches my outlined form, no light is reflected by the dock so that I can see it and it's devious shapes.
The lack of light isn't a something that I noticed, it's a nothing. A shadow is nothing, a non-existence.
A shadow is whatever I can't see, whatever I can't discern. Do I fear my shadow? Perhaps I would be more afraid if I had no shadow and the light could see through me... Then I would be open, clear, completely visible, vulnerable.
Terrifying, isn't it?