by Ella Rhoads Higginson
H me! I know how large and cool and white
The moon lies on the brow of Sehome Hill,
And how the firs stand shadowy and still,
Etched on that luminous background this soft night;
How the nighthawk sinks from his starry height,
And breathes his one note, mournfully and shrill,
And crickets clamor in the marsh until
The dusk grows vocal with their deep delight.
City, a lifetime spent in thee were not
Worth one night in my western solitude!
Thy pulse is feverish, thy blood is hot,
Thine arteries throb with passion heavily;
But oh, how sweet I hear, in interlude,
The beating, moon-lured tides of Puget Sea.
(published in The Voice of April-Land and Other Poems, 1903)
ELLA RHOADS HIGGINSON (January 28, 1862?-December 27, 1940) was a prominent American author. She wrote award-winning fiction, poetry, and essays characteristically set in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. She was the author of two collections of short stories, six books of poetry, a novel, a travel book, well over one hundred short stories, over four hundred poems, and numerous newspaper essays. She was influential for the ways her writing drew international attention to the then little-known Pacific Northwest region of the United States.
Bio quoted from Dr. Laura Laffrado’s Western Washington University research page at http://faculty.wwu.edu/laffrado/research.shtml