Not metaphorically. Literally! My gardener buddy at work does this too, so I guess it's more common than one might think. I have a couple lights on the house that illuminate porches and I used them to light my work (poorly), so a lot of it was by feel. It was cold out, but I managed to work up a light sweat digging in the dry soil. It felt good.
Biodynamic farmers sometimes till their fields at night. I have read that the scientific rationale behind this is that the weed seeds are photo-sensitive and will germinate at a lower rate if they don't see the direct sun while being worked about in the soil. That may be true, but desperation drove me to the yard.
I had daytime activities this weekend, so Saturday and Sunday nights before the predicted rains came on Monday I planted Aristida purpurea (Purple Three Awn) that I had grown from seed, some Achillea millefolium (yarrow) that I moved to fill in gaps, some Sysrinchium bellum (Blue eyed grass) that was in a pot, and three Penstemom heterophyllus 'Margarita BOP'. I feel good that they will get the benefit of all this rain.
There are many wild flower seeds that have germinated since the last rain. They ought to take off as well.
Also planted in the vegetable garden: More onion sets. The ones that my son planted a few weeks ago are already showing a few inches of green above ground.