Up Late Talking

January 12, 1995|By Michael Fallon

Evening has come clear across the sea,

Overcome the shadows in the yard,

And long passed among the houses to the west

-- A few stars in the corner of each window.

By firelight, lantern light, by candlelight,

Long after dinner, the whiskey blazes in the glass,

words flow easily as more wine,

Though outside the wind,

According to its season, brings

Thunder, rain or snow.

The ancient Celts, our ancestors,

Loved eloquence

More than fierceness or strength,

For they knew well the long night

Would outlast their enemies.

And tonight

Each of us has brought the sacrament of his loneliness

And entered the magic circle.

As our talk, our silences, advance

Toward a stillness where

Some ghostly truth seems to hover

in the air

If I could only hold your faces there

Forever, those inward-looking smiles,

When each silently praises

The strange gift of his life

-- and the long walk home.

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