Autumn rattles at the windows of the night, rips
leaves from looping trees, punches
gustily against the wall.
I waken to creaking roofbeams, peer
sightless into blacklit night. Nothing
to see, but everything that is is sounding:
such a rush and crash of waves on rocks;
the clothesline sings a one-note samba,
the chimney turns to didgeridoo.
Only the dog sleeps, silent, beside me.
If I open the door to let the poem in,
it can sleep all night on the bench by the fire and
I’ll return to bed then to wake you, slipping
frigid feet behind your knees.
Photos are of Usnea, or “Old man’s beard” lichens in British Columbia and Nova Scotia.