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  • By Paul Gallagher

The Night Star

Meteor of 1860 - Frederic Edwin Church

At last, the Sun looked down upon the treasure The night star had seen; It rose, and burned to know what midnight pleasure To the night star, this had been; Gold and bright it shone, seeking the measure Of those hours dark and mean -- What could the lovely herald of the night Have seen, more sweet than morning’s fair delight?

The night star, when the great light turned away, Had like a jewel appeared, Glowing at how all changed the dark world lay, New flowered and new-sphered, Now fed with hidden sunlight from the day, In veins more richly stored -- Then she had seen, after the darkness came How midnight kindles night winds into flame;

How quick the melancholy mind rejoices, And casts mansions in time; So bright she shone, and cast down heaven’s voices Like Philomel, sublime; She filled the eastern air, where day arises, With every breeze and clime – And on the Earth, though still and sad, the root Of great trees stirred, and arbors glowed with fruit.

As one in prison waits upon the dawn That sets him free at last; As in deep shadows, light and thought are born To look out on the vast; So did the night star spin her pearls upon The hours as they passed, And when the East grew finally bright again, Her radiance faded from the eyes of men.

Paul Gallagher is a poet, translator and also an economics journalist. He lives in Virginia with his wife. Paul has spent much of his life fighting for the revival of classical poetry and classical culture. See his other works on Keats and Shelley as well as more of his poetry here.

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