“A little light scratches the darkness”

Kentaro Miura’s Berserk is everything. If I keep up the writing, how serious I am about this will become obvious. It’s one of my major frames of reference.

Some time ago, I was looking at Berserk posts on Tumblr and ran across one originally posted by dellalovespeppermints with this caption:

Unless one loses a precious thing, he will never know its true value. A little light finally scratches the darkness; it lets the exhausted one face his shattered dream and realize his path cannot be walked. Can man live happily without embracing his wounded heart?

This sounds like the Narrator in tone and circles Griffith’s pivotal dream speech and everything following Guts’ reaction to it, but it’s not drawn from the source material, nor apparently any commonly quoted fan translation of it. Everything leads back to the Tumblr post, or so it seems.

But by picking out some of the distinct phrases rather than searching for the entire text, it’s revealed that this is a cleaned-up version of a post on a Yahoo! group from 2006:

unless one loses a precious thing…he will never know its true value….a little light scratches the darkness it lets the exhausted one face his shattered dream, and realized..that his path cannot be walked…. can a man live happliy without embracing his wounded heart?

Charles ??? made at least one other post to this group heavily referencing a fan translation of Berserk‘s Narrator, but was evasive when questioned if it was his original work and mentioned that his MySpace blog depicted more of his personal feelings. Since MySpace blogs disappeared during a redesign, I’ll likely never know if he used that platform to rave about Berserk or simply to post more material with or without attribution.

Regardless of Charles ???’s sourcing, the post about “the exhausted one” is compelling, and restates some of the core themes in Berserk effectively. Trauma and how humans react to it are fundamental to a work that is extremely violent, but that also examines betrayal, loss, and grief with sensitivity. Berserk has been one of those little lights scratching at the darkness for me, a way towards accepting a wounded heart.

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