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The wind from the north woods has made its way into our backyard and brings into present, past summers at the family cabin.

I allow myself the luxury of memory and the melancholy it may evoke, to keep the special place alive in my mind, as the neighbors’ loud voices poke at my solitude.

The problem with finding contentment in quiet, in taking more time to listen, is that you become more sensitive to sound. This can be good and bad but for now, I’ll consider it good. The window is open in the carriage house next door and it sounds as if someone is grinding wood. A man waves

from the street with an expandable ladder on his shoulder. Of course, I don’t know that this is what is on his shoulder until after I have waved back and nodded, yes, he can borrow our driveway to climb up to the open window and join

those who are grinding wood. There are only a few more minutes of sunlight and the driveway will soon be covered in evening’s shadow. At the cabin I would move my chair from the deck to the sea grass to catch the last streams of sunlight as the wind began to cool my sun-soaked skin. Now, I drag the same well-weathered heavy wooden chair that I sat in there, into the last of the day’s glow then listen

as dogs compete for the loudest bark. I tell ours to hush and choose to shut the rest out. But I hear the airplane overhead and as it fades into the distance, I notice that I also hear

the wind. I always thought there was something special about the way the wind hit the water up there in the north woods, but I hear it here too and there is no water near. The leaves are a part of this urban orchestra, creating

a rich timbre, a flute-like melody in which only songbirds can compete. They have come to join the commotion just as the cardinal enters, crossing the stage and steps forward. His innocent ultra high tenor echos in measured staccato beats

and a quartet follows: Chip chip a day day day day, Konk a eeeeee, and the whistle of the worker, while wrenches drop to the floor like the tinging of triangles. Then just as quickly as the commotion began, it stops.

The cardinal, with his proud plumage takes his bow. The curtain is drawn and the sun, our shining diva, slips offstage. I realize

I have become one with all of the musicians and instruments. I am a part of the symphony. I raise my glass with the gnats afloat, to say ‘good day’ to a beautiful day, and slip nonchalantly offstage to make dinner then whisper

Sweet dreams and

Good night.

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