Very rough; I sort of threw it together on the plane ride from Minneapolis to Austin.
Reason, no electric light,
flickers on and off with life,
casting shadows in the night;
not like some smooth, steady sun
throwing gold rays by the ton
equally on everyone,
but like a fire lit at camp,
reddish in the dew and damp,
casting light in frenzied dance.
Some are brighter, some are less,
some will see where others guess,
but each must honestly confess
that reason's flame is not so bright
to cast all shadows from the night,
is none too steady in its light,
but flickers here and blazes there
and here dies down to ashes bare
and sputters in the rainy air.
But who is fool enough to say
that lights that are not bright as day
cannot still light up our way?
And who will say that smaller hearths
than that which lights the world's own heart
in true light can have no part?
Say rather that we never lack
the means to fight and harry back
the dark of night, the inky black!
It dances, but is never dead;
it aided where its light has led;
it keeps us safe till morning-red.