The Midnight Hour

WHEN all the clanging noises of the day
Are hushed in westward darkness, — sped away
Like roaring trains that o’er the horizon’s bound
Have whirled their hurricane of fire and sound, —
And the still zenith of the midnight sky
Uprisen from the underworld on high
Brings thence an Orient peace, a calm delight,
And pours it down upon the western night,
Then open thought and life before me. Then
Kindles the heart aflame; and blessed men
Descend to dwell with me, laying their hands
In mine, and guiding me to pleasant lands
Where I may dwell a season undisturbed, —
The scholar’s midnight kingdom. Not perturbed
Their rapt communion in that silent hour;
Most intimate and tender then their power.
T. M. Coan.