A pleasing night past summer’s rise, the fireflies
draw closed day’s curtain; we note how purple dusk
flows into darkness earlier each evening, and
faintest smells of autumn begin to interweave
with all the garden’s ripened fruits. The heat retreats
before the cooling air’s relief and hushing stillness
grant their peace. And then, across the dozing river,
out beyond the farmer’s field, sudden music detonates,
to bruise the night with noise. “The County Fair,” we say,
accepting shattered silence, and listen to the program
beneath indifferent stars. The drummer pounds
and hours pass and now we are in bed awake,
and longing for the concert’s close; it comes at last,
a slower song, and gentle end; we sigh and still,
to welcome waiting sleep. And then, along the river’s bank,
Coyote’s pack begins to howl, piercing, clear, poetically;
a choral gift, an answer to the raucousness endured.
My spirit fills, I bless the song, its aching reclamation
of nature’s right to sing the night into her fragile dreams.
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