Acquainted with
the Night

by Robert Frost

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain -- and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.

"In restless dreams I walked alone
Through narrow streets of cobble stone,
Beneath the halo of a streetlamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
Split the night and touched the sound of silence..."

It would seem that Mr. Frost and I are not the ONLY ones who are at ease with being alone at night. I bet Paul Simon read this poem too! There is some degree of comfort in solitude, and there is some discomfort when that solitude is disturbed.

I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.

Why do I feel like "The cat that ate the canary"? Isn't this the same feeling that I get when I see a cop car with a radar gun, even when I'm NOT going too fast? Is it because I usually AM going to fast? What could I be doing out here in the dark that could arouse suspicion? Or is it just that I am ashamed to be ALONE?

I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,

In the city: Bloodcurdling screams that you don't WANT to know about.
Anywhere: The TV blaring, or a baby crying.
Out in the country: The barking of #*@$#&! coyotes!

Remember in "Stopping by Woods", it was so quiet I could hear my own heart beat? Is that even POSSIBLE anymore here in town?

But not to call me back or say good-bye;

But just to remind me of where I am, rather than where I THOUGHT I was...

And further still at an unearthly height,
O luminary clock against the sky

The moon is actually quite an accurate "short term" timepiece as it moves across the sky at 15 degrees per hour. Unfortunately, it is quite worthless unless you know exactly WHERE it was when you started out, what TIME it was, and you have a way of measuring the angle that it has moved. ALSO, remember that during HALF of the month, the moon is on the other side of the sky and is not even visible at night!! I won't even MENTION clouds!

Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.

So... "Does anybody really KNOW what time it is? Does anybody really CARE?"

I have been one acquainted with the night.

"Hello darkness my old friend,
I've come to talk with you again..."

The night is my friend; It is relief from the hustle and bustle of the DAY. I find peace in it, I find repose in it, I DREAM in it. I become lost in my own reverie until....

Oooops, somebody's shaking my harness bells... Gotta GO!!

"Sounds of Silence"
"Simon and Garfunkel, 1964"

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