11 p.m.

Across the street a lopsided elm
leaps like a buffalo toward
the North Star. Light is gone.
Shape replaces color. An airplane,
camouflaged by constellations,
is blinking, blinking, blinking.
"Whee-o, whee-o, whee-o,"
cicadas chant evening prayers.
A freight train slows to a canter
through town, whistles "wo-woooo,"
at every crossing.
Cat beside me on the porch step,
fireflies surround us,
blinking, blinking, blinking.
The planet twists in the dark
but night never sleeps.

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