The dipper is off to the northeast, above the stand of trees from which I've lately been hearing strange bird calls in the nights -- long squeaks, as from a very large baby bird. I wonder what strange fowl are nesting there? All sounds carry far tonight. I hear cars passing on distant roads. There is the sound of the night breeze, as well -- both a high-pitched whispering in the nearby pines, and a deep hum that prowls about the surrounding forest. The there is the constant chirping of crickets. After three o'clock, the eastern sky begins to glow with blue moonrise. The waning crescent spreads a halo behind a now fully leafed oak, and spills over the fronts of the pale, silent houses across the street, which emerge from the warm darkness like wan ghosts. I wait in the shadows for something I can't quite imagine.