Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (18071882). Complete Poetical Works. 1893.
Voices of the Night
A Psalm of Life
What the Heart of the Young Man Said to the Psalmist
Mr. Longfellow said of this poem: I kept it some time in manuscript, unwilling to show it to any one, it being a voice from my inmost heart, at a time when I was rallying from depression. Before it was published in the Knickerbocker Magazine, October, 1838, it was read by the poet to his college class at the close of a lecture on Goethe. Its title, though used now exclusively for this poem, was originally, in the poets mind, a generic one. He notes from time to time that he has written a psalm, a psalm of death, or another psalm of life. The psalmist is thus the poet himself. When printed in the Knickerbocker it bore as a motto the lines from Crashaw: