Fall night

When I stay up long enough
I can see him rise again: Orion,
Hefting his studded belt,
His sloped shoulder,
His sword, his lifted foot
Over the edge
Of the little world
I occupy at midnight.

All the lights switched off,
Everybody else asleep,
I step out on the deck, waiting.
Silence doesn’t always come.
Sometimes, wind blowing from the east,
It’s the traffic from the highway.
The dog, eager to protect, or maybe
Needing to hear her own voice,
Doesn’t quit barking
In the poplar grove,
Answered by coyotes – five, a dozen?-
Speaking her language
Or their own.

Silence doesn’t always come,
But stillness does, if I’m patient:
Once again, the hunter walks the sky.

- Susanne von Rennenkampff