After a Sunset of Great Splendor

WHEN I remember that the starry sky
Was once but dusty darkness; that the air
Can take such glory and such majesty
From smoky fragments and the sun’s fierce glare,
And vapors cold, drawn from the far salt seas ;
If out of shapeless matter, void and bare,
And rude, oblivious atoms, Time can raise
This splendid planet; if the formless air,
Earth’s barren clods, decay, and wracks of death
Can wear the bloom of summer, or put on
Man’s strength and beauty, surely this strange world hath
Some certainty; some meaning will he won
Out of the stubborn silence, and our blind
And baffled thoughts some sure repose will find.
William A. Dunn.