Becoming the Torchbearer

Erik Blair
4 min readSep 8, 2023
Photo by Aziz Acharki on Unsplash

In the dwindling embers of a once roaring bonfire, I find myself facing an undeniable reality. I stand at the crossroads where the paths of youthful ambition and the wisdom forged from years traversing this chaotic globe meet. It’s a gritty truth, an awakening, shorn of any false pretense that I once harbored about being the lone warrior against the darkness that sometimes shrouds our world.

Gone are the days when I believed I could bear the weight of the world’s sins on my seasoned shoulders, a self-appointed guardian of humanity’s flickering flame. The atlas of my being has become frayed and weary, an old map marked with the trails of battles fought, some won and many lost. These aching bones tell tales of wars waged against the abyss, and yet, it persists.

Yet, as the sun takes its daily bow, and shadows lengthen, I find an untamed beauty in surrender, not to defeat but to the realization that the role I play in this grand, unpredictable narrative has evolved. It’s an acquired taste, like the finest wine, emboldened by age, refined by experience, to understand that perhaps the torch needs to be passed, to illuminate paths for others, encouraging them to fight the good fight, to seek the light in the darkest corners.

I recognize now that my sojourn in this ever-changing labyrinth has transmuted from a zealous crusader to a sage whispering in the ears of those willing to listen, urging them to never make a bedfellow of complacency, to reject the insidiousness of normalizing the darkness that gnaws at the fringes of our society.

As I venture into the golden hues of my twilight years, I embrace this metamorphosis with open arms. My mission, now, is to be the beacon, a lighthouse in the tempestuous seas, guiding brave souls towards shores where hope resides, where collective strength can birth revolutions, where together, we can drag the looming darkness into the merciless glare of the spotlight, dismantling it piece by piece.

There might be those who misconstrue this subtle shift in stance as a concession to the abyss, a white flag fluttering in the face of darkness, but let me be unequivocally clear — capitulation is not a term inscribed in my lexicon. The marrow of my bones resonates with an undying fervor, an unyielding commitment to exposing the grim underbelly of the world that endeavors to hide in the shadows.

Nay, I have not relinquished my role in this theatre of life; I have merely adapted, transformed into a figure that understands the nuances of this enduring battle. I stand resolute, with the grit and tenacity that has led me through the winding paths of countless adventures, prepared to seize the malevolence that lurks in the hidden corners and drag it, kicking and screaming, into the unforgiving light of day.

This, I vow, is not a swan song, but a renewed declaration of war against the ignominies that threaten to engulf the sanctity of our humanity. With undiminished passion, I shall continue to wage this battle, rallying kindred spirits to join forces, to stand united in the face of the encroaching darkness.

And thus, with fierce determination etched into every fiber of my being, I shall endeavor to illuminate the transgressions and the injustices, pulling them from their murky hiding places and thrusting them into the spotlight for all to witness.

I seek to foster a congregation of warriors, emboldened by truth and righteousness, ready to forge a future where rectitude is not a distant dream, but a reality sculpted by the many hands eager to shape it.

Through this act, this relentless pursuit of truth and justice, we shall foster a beacon that pierces the gloom, a rallying cry that echoes through time, uniting us in a common goal — to dismantle the wrongs and construct a world forged in the fires of equity, compassion, and unswerving solidarity.

Together, we forge onward, towards a dawn where the light unequivocally triumphs, where someday, the ‘right’ reigns supreme.

And so, as the final chapters of my tale unfold, I vow to be the poetic voice echoing through time, reminding the world that unity, compassion, and the relentless pursuit of justice are not just the fodder of dreamers, but the very essence of what it means to be truly alive, to be fiercely human.

Together, we stand, resilient and unyielding, as the guardians of the light we yearn to see in this world.