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I walk darkly down the day,
Sanguine, and yet never sure
If the noon's abundant ray
In its brightness shall endure;
Brooding calm or crying storm,
Sunrise glory, sunset splendor,
Beauty in each shifting form,
Grave or tender,--
Through them, time of frost or flower,
Conscious every orbèd hour,
I walk darkly.


I walk darkly down the night,
Slave to marvel, questioning
If the moon's ethereal light
Be not some dream-builded thing;
Under star on swirling star,
Meteor dust and comet's fire,
Vaults of purple faint and far
Where expire
Tiny wavering flecks of flame,
Atom-points without a name,
I walk darkly.


I walk darkly; peace or stress,
Crest of joy or depth of woe,
I may grope and I may guess,
Fancy, and yet never know.
Just the husk of truth I grip,--
Heapèd wisdom of the ages,
Learning's mightiest fellowship,
Saints and sages,--
In despite of each and all,
What am I but folly's thrall
Who walk darkly?