toad lilies, the Hunter’s Moon

toad lilies

1.

Why was I awake, room aglow with moonlight? Over in the woods, the coyotes were singing. A yip, a run of yips, then pure song circling and returning, voice to voice. Why was I awake, my own voice quiet, husband beside me, Are you listening? And yes, I was listening. A run of yips, then silence, everything gone back to sleep.

2.

I was awake to pee, coyotes quiet, the little bright star that I wished on the night before in the eastern sky, high over Hallowell, already set. But returning to bed, I stood by the window and saw the waxing Hunter’s Moon hanging almost perfect above Grass Lake Mountain, just beyond the lake.

3.

And this morning, feeding the Steller’s jays, I remembered looking up from planting garlic on Sunday to follow the sound of the geese, hundreds of them, one skein lost in the mist against Hallowell, one skein joyously singing their way south over Sakinaw Lake. Look up, I told myself as I bent to pick up some fallen seeds, and caught my hair in the toad lilies, leaning towards the light.

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