The Day is Done

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


The day is done, and the darkness

            Falls from the wings of Night

As a feather is wafted downward

            From an eagle in his flight.


I see the lights of the village

            Gleam through the rain and the mist,

And a feeling of sadness comes o’er me

            That my soul cannot resist:


A feeling of sadness and longing,

            That is not akin to pain,

And resembles sorrow only

          As the mist resembles the rain.


Come, read to me some poem,

            Some simple and heartfelt lay,

That shalt soothe this restless feeling,

            And banish the thoughts of day.


Not from the grand old masters,

            Not from the bards sublime,

Whose distant footsteps echo

            Through the corridors of Time.


For, like strains of martial music,

            Their mighty thoughts suggest

Life’s endless toil and endeavor;

            And to-night I long for rest.


Read from some humbler poet,

            Whose songs gushed from his heart,

As showers from the clouds of summer,

            Or tears from the eyelids start;


Who, through long days of labor,

            And nights devoid of ease,

Still heard in his soul the music

            Of wonderful melodies.


Such songs have power to quiet

            The restless pulse of care,

And come like the benediction

            That follows after prayer.


Then read from the treasured volume

            The poem of thy choice,

And lend to the rhyme of the poet

            The beauty of thy voice.


And the night shall be filled with music,

            And the cares, that infest the day,

Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,

            And as silently steal away.

(I came across the poem recently and liked it.)