September 7, 1851

in Thoreau’s Journal:

Our ecstatic states, which appear to yield so little fruit, have this value at least: though in the seasons when our genius reigns we may be powerless for expression, yet, in calmer seasons, when our talent is active, the memory of those rarer moods come to color our picture, and is the permanent paint-pot, as it were in which we dip our brush.

The stars are dimly reflected in the water. The path of water-bugs in the moon’s rays is like ripples of light. It is only when you stand fronting the sun or moon that you see their light reflected in the water.  I hear no frogs these nights––bullfrogs or others––as in the spring.  It is not the season of sound. 


It is remarkably still at this hour and season. No sound of bird or beast for the most part. This has none of the reputed noxious qualities of night.