This Moment: 7:04 P.M. March 27, 2012

I am out on the deck watching the sun disappear into the lake. The small dog presses his nose into the cool evening air. He whines his annoyance with his leash. Small violet flowers and old leaves speckle the side lawn. Toy-sized planes pass overhead. Robins, magpies, doves, finches, sparrows and wrens, flit from tree to tree, their voices melody and harmony with an occasional solo. The old dog is resting on the sidewalk, her front paws crossed before her. Days ago I saw three white cranes standing in a field. I stopped the car and walked to the ditch bank to take a photo. The smallest of the trio unfolded it's wings and beat the air as if it would lift from the ground. I understood the warning and retreated behind a poplar, watching from between bare branches as the birds stabbed the ground for seeds. The small dog alternates between barking and whining at a runner jogging past. The field is covered with a stubble of green. The air has turned brisk and my fingers are stiffening. The birds intensify their calls as they sing the sun down.

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