Published on Academy of American Poets (

Call of the Night

Dark, and the wind-blurred pines,
           With a glimmer of light between.
Then I, entombed for an hourless night
           With the world of things unseen.

Mist, the dust of flowers,
           Leagues, heavy with promise of snow,
And a beckoning road ‘twixt vale and hill,
           With the lure that all must know.

A light, my window’s gleam,
           Soft, flaring its squares of red—
I loose the ache of the wilderness
           And long for the fire instead.

You too know, old fellow?
           Then, lift your head and bark.
It’s just the call of the lonesome place,
           The winds and the housing dark.


This poem is in the public domain. 

About this Poem

“Call of the Night ” was published in Harper’s Weekly on December 23, 1911. It appears in Barnes’s Collected Poems: With Notes Toward the Memoirs (University of Wisconsin Press, 2005). 


Djuna Barnes

Djuna Barnes was born in Cornwall-on-Hudson, New York, on June 12, 1892. She was an American novelist, poet, playwright, journalist, and visual artist, as well as an important figure in the Modernist movement. Her works include Nightwood (1937), Ladies Almanack (1928) and The Book of Repulsive Women (1915). Barnes died in New York City on June 18, 1982.

Date Published: 2016-02-28

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