This is the product of a long, long day. I hope you like it.
<i>Ode to the Moon</i>
Midnight settles over the darkened field,
To the lengthy howl of a distant beast,
And with a hollow sigh I slowly yield
Under the watch of spirits long-deceased,
And the fair gaze of thee, effulgent Moon.
'Tis the witching hour, and lonely winds drift
Seldom through the boughs of trees, while the loon,
Wary of the forlorn hour, hov’ring low,
Sings a lofty ballad in dusky tune.
The stillness seems to breathe its own sweet life,
Such nectar as would bring me to a swoon
Beneath the stars and glitt’ring firmament,
The faint forms of clouds, the lingering Orb;
A shimmer on the bare graves, somnolent;
A lucence I would earnestly absorb.
'Tis no rash melody for rapid minds,
This dark symphony of the midnight hours;
No coarse joy, nor fleeting pleasure that grinds
A fugitive life, till it strains, and sours.
'Tis lasting wonderment that brews this glow,
That pierces lightly the encroaching trees,
And settles in patches on autumn snow,
While currents of the night pass piously.
The fog hath parted, and thou hang’st low
Over the graveyard, lonesome in thy heights,
Fair Moon, and glimm’ring with abiding woe.
A quietude hath spread beneath thy rays,
And ah! is breathing of an ancient dole.
'Tis sweet communion, the Moon is in phase,
And the night airs are rich upon my soul.
The tombstones lie in hushèd dignity,
Austere and bleak beneath the midnight skies,
And I imagine my own name, deeply
Inscribed on a stone, with words fair and wise;
An epithet to solemnize my end.
Thou would’st illuminate me all the night,
Effulgent Moon, and I be free to send
My praises to the midnight, forever.
The breezes gather, and quietly wend
Between the trees, and I would be as much
A part of them as thee, my darkling Friend.
The calls of forest beasts transpire the dark,
Sound off the stones, and echo to the skies,
While clement melodies flow from the lark;
And I, too, would linger in those sweet cries.
The mistrals breathe many a fragrant promise
That tingles over my exposèd skin,
Of grave solemnities, and torpid bliss,
And blankets of fallen snow that lie thin
Upon the distant surface of the soil.
These rows are only halfway desolate,
For wand’ring spirits flit by, free of toil,
Save delicate exertion of the will,
And free of heaving passions that would spoil
The tranquil stillness of thy light, dear Moon.
Ah! drafts of night beckon me from this coil,
And I desire to be part of that scene!–
To be the leaves that rustle overhead,
Or the gusting winds that howl by unseen,
And bristle with poignant words, left unsaid.
Alas! what is this? The wraiths of night fly
Off on the breezes, and dive underground,
And a gleam of harsh light hath pierced my eye,
And broken the dark spell that held me bound.
In my soul there settles a deep yearning,
As gusts of morning billow o’er the field,
And the lofty stars cease their shimmering.
I turn my gaze to thee, effulgent Moon,
And watch thee overhead, still lingering
Amid the hostile proddings of the sun,
Even as thy creatures cease their howling;
And all thy ghastly company are fled
Beneath the verdance of the graveyard main;
As the loon reposes on its dry bed
Of leaves, and nature comes to life again.