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Acquainted With The Night

Rating: 3.7

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain - and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.

I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.

I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry

Came over houses from another street,
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Andrea Scarpa 08 April 2013

This poem is so dear to me, one of the most beautifully vivid portraits anyone has ever painted using words, I hope those of you who are not so familiar as I am with depression and loneliness can see that too.

59 43 Reply
Karen Sinclair 06 November 2012

To me there is an enjoyment of the peace and solitude of the wee small hours and having the confidence to merely enjoy your own space, whilst appreciating the sights and sounds...

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Stephen W 19 February 2013

The clock is the moon (unearthly height)

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Nadine Gallo 18 November 2011

This poem is about time passing with a dark cast to it. No mention of sunshine, only darkness and rain, loneliness, isolation. Time is neutral - just a clock against the sky. He hasn't just been walking at night, night is his friend. Acquainted is the verb here. It's as if he doesn't know anyone, just night. If he stands still, the sound of feet stops. But there's a cry from afar. Someone's in pain. Surreal poetry.

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Stephen W 04 March 2013

What time does the lunar clock tell? It can be used to tell the time by it's height above the horizon, but I now think this is a red herring. Frost is well aware of astronomy, as some of his other poems show. He would know that the face of the moon is exactly the same as it was a billion years ago. This gives him a perspective on the human suffering of the interrupted cry. The cry neither calls him back or bids him goodbye. He neither feels compelled to investigate, or repelled to leave humanity behind and go out in the wilderness. Instead he consults the moon, and considers eternity.

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Dr Antony Theodore 11 October 2020

But not to call me back or say good-bye; And further still at an unearthly height, One luminary clock against the sky a great poem of Robert Frost. tony

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Suryendu Chaudhury 27 September 2020

The night here stands for the miseries of life.

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Dr Antony Theodore 18 September 2020

I have been one acquainted with the night. I have walked out in rain - and back in rain. I have outwalked the furthest city light. walking in the night to the city light. a fine poem. tony

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L MILTON HANKINS 28 August 2020

This is a beautifully-crafted poem. Frost at his best.

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Michael Walker 25 May 2020

This remains my favourite poem by Robert Frost.

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