no sun or stars,
dim, grey light,
birds are settling on their perches,
last minute comments being
sung sotto voce.
Mockingbird in the Cedar
will sing until the stars appear.
The scarlet sentinel cries my presence,
his final duty of the day,
as a lone cow bawls for her calf.
In the gathering darkness Coyotes
begin their evening chorale
with a single thin line of melody,
again the cow calls with
no answer but the mutter of a turkey.
Such stillness fills this time of transition,
no wind, no voice, no movement.
City-glow is all the light that remains now
and every bird is fluffed and still.
Softly the nighttime strings begin
the surging patterns they will play
without cadence until first frost.
A single Owl sends his muted
query into the deepening darkness,
coyotes call and respond, nearer,
but the chickens sleep safely
within their coop and finally
there, the bleat of a calf.