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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Season of Light

Air Date: Week of

A preview of Living on Earth’s annual holiday storytelling special. This year, we hear tales of light and darkness from around the world.


Coming up on Living on Earth: the days have grown short, the nights dark and cold.It’s time to gather by the fireside for our annual holiday storytelling special. At this time of year, we celebrate light because in many parts of the world, there isn’t very much of it.

DAHLSVEEN: The winter in Norway is dark and I’m so lucky to live in a place in Norway where there is a few hours of light in daytime, but up north in Norway it’s dark, daytime, night time.

GELLERMAN: Heidi Dahlsveen tells stories: stories that shine with hope, even on the darkest of days. But beware what might be lurking in the depths of a Norwegian winter night.

DAHLSVEEN: It was Christmas Eve. It was cold. It was a dark dark time. He could hear the sound of small waves. He felt the strong salty smell. He walked on the pier towards the boat. He jumped into the boat, filled the keg. He even took a sip himself and the strong liquid warmed him even out to his fingertips. And he had just stepped out of the boat when he heard a sound. SSSSSLLLLUUURP. And he slowly looked up and when he saw what he saw he was petrified. He looked straight at the sailors and the fishermen’s greatest fear, death itself.

Draugen was standing in front of him, blocking his way. Draugen; once he was a brave fisherman or a sailor, too brave and headstrong with no respect for the ocean. He tried to conquer the ocean and was himself conquered by it. And because he had been so headstrong and headless he was now missing the head. Instead of the head it was sea tangle and seaweed on top of his shoulders. And the young man he ran as fast as he could. He heard him coming closer and closer and soon he reached a churchyard but in that moment he heard the bell going dong dong dong 12 times in the middle of the most dark night of Norway and he thought, “I wonder if I will survive this darkness…”

GELLERMAN: Join us for the Living on Earth holiday special, “Season of Light. “ We’ll celebrate with tales of light and darkness, from around the world. And we promise, they won’t all be scary.



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