“Yes, I do enjoy walking at night. The world’s more to my liking then, not so loud, not so fast, not so crowded, and a good deal more mysterious.”
—Cornelia Funke, from Inkheart (Scholastic, 2004)
“Night poured over the desert. It came suddenly, in purple. In the clear air, the stars drilled down out of the sky, reminding any thoughtful watcher that it is in the deserts and high places that religions are generated. When men see nothing but bottomless infinity over their heads they have always had a driving and desperate urge to find someone to put in the way.”
—Terry Prachett, from Jingo (HarperTorch, 1999)
Take me to the other side of this night,
where I am you, we are us,
the kingdom where pronouns are intertwined
… and the sea sang with the murmur of light.
—Octavio Paz, from Sunstone/Piedra de Sol, translated from the Spanish by Eliot Weinberger (New Directions, 1991)
“Night is a world lit by itself.”
after Philip Levine
In twilight, on a road, we stop,
hearts beating like mad, the rabbit
in her frightened hesitation, ears cocked,
behind a wood slat fence.
She hears something I am deaf to.
I notice the dusk, the telephone
wire, its buzz, the way the sun
burns hotter when it steps past the far line.
She hears everything I long for—
birds rustling leaves, singing. Maybe
secret words from the first star
in the almost dark sky.
The part of me that can see one star at a time
goes with her when she flees. The rest—
my fear, the night, my stubborn silent
envy—stays here, with me.
—Liza Porter, from The 2River View (17.1, Fall 2012)