In Between

Time between dawn and sunrise.
The world wakes.
Air cool and full of life,
grants the sun permission to warm.

Chickadees whistle warnings and flutter softly at the feeder.
Mourning doves call to their mates
and the Oriole whistles an invitation to dine.

The Osprey alights on the ash tree by the lake,
and scans the flat surface for breakfast.

The moon stands it ground and gives way slowly to the sun’s ascension –
the morning star dims in the east and fades from sight,
waiting for evening’s return.

The clear sky rolls thunder and a white trail at 30,000 feet cuts a pathway across the sky –
early morning arrivals make their way from Europe to the Twins to the south,
another great circle closed in morning light.

The unshorn lawn displays every imperfection and needs a spring cutting.
The new green rises here, dips there, the ground left uneven by 50 years of settling fill.
But then,
duck trails left by feeding mallards Desi and Daryl during the night,
would be lost in the dew-dusted grasses.

A loon calls, the wail echoes around the lake in language ancient and refined –
The cry stakes territory, piercing the day.

The coal train from the Dakotas rumbles in the distance.
On its way to Cohasset, it signals a morning passage with a forlorn whine,
powering its way, diesels throbbing
– carrying a dark, washed feed for the fiery beast
to the east that lights the night

Buds on the birches heavy with pollen,
wait for an errant breeze that will shake and flutter their burdened limbs,
and cast seed to the wind – – – then a sneeze.

The sun surfaces from the park across the lake.
The forest canopy dark under the golden glow,
frames the white pines rising.

Some must work.
Tires hum on the county road and big-piped pickups
throttle the quiet as they make their way to demanding commerce.

It is not summer – yet
the coffee cooled on the deck,
the air not yet warm.

The hummer comes to the Purple Wave Petunias,
probing for breakfast.

Retreat to the kitchen.

Author: Doug Lewandowski

I have walked a varied path. I was a Christian Brother, an English teacher/counselor and Licensed Psychologist. I have a twice monthly column in the Duluth News Tribune and have had a story published in the Nemadji Review and placed third in this year’s Jade Ring contest of the Wisconsin Writer’s Association. I was a commentator for KCRB, Minnesota Public Radio in the 90s. I transplanted to Duluth to be closer to grandchildren.

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