Douglas McCollam: Zero Hour 2 A.M.
Sometimes it seems the tide of the night is going to carry us where it’s going to carry us, no matter how hard we swim.
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. — Robert Frost
By Douglas McCollam
I’m getting reacquainted with the night.
We were close years ago when it was common for me to hear the chimes at midnight in cities from New York to Paris to Shanghai, often accompanied by the sound of tinkling ice and the lure of what might come next.
These days our relationship is very different. Passing through late middle age in my high aerie here along the banks of the Mississippi River, I wake with a start, restless, alarmed and alone and wander out on to my balcony to watch ships glide by in the dark, their names illuminated in glowing halos, suggesting far off destinations I’m unlikely to see again.
One of my earliest memories is waking up in my grandfather’s bed only to see h…
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