Deep woods Down East, we’re cabined, cribbed, confined,
And bedded down. Up through an oculus,
The wiry asters glint — and wink, though they are blind.
All day, the rifle shots have shaken us
With their reports; their distant echoes, once
So like the pock of butting boxcars, all
Have joined the stillness; now we do not wince,
But concentrate our focus on the sprawl
Of firmament that’s sparged above our heads.
The woodstove that submits its mite of heat
To warm us in our heavily swaddled beds
Gives up at last. Then prostrate in defeat
Ourselves, we shut our eyes on night and stars,
On dying fire and sky, till sleep is ours.
— From the September 30, 2013 issue of National Review.