Lights coming on in windows; windows lit all night long suddenly

dark . . . How long have I been here, unable to read, head on the desk,

listening to rain, the rain striking the window; the far off and near-

unheard roar of a lone fighter, moonlit trail vanishing past the horizon,

a phrase I had long ago underlined. When? To those very words I’ve

been listening again. It’s now the lovely lilac time. It lasts about forty-

five minutes here. I really ought to get out of the house, go for a walk,

drive around, find some home owner’s lilac bush to sample if this can be

done without looking suspicious or overly pervy, plunging my face in its

great heart-shaped leaves, breathing that scent which is childhood to me,

I don’t know why. All I know is that I have been sitting here all night

missing out on what may well be the last chance I am ever going to have.

Now the birds are starting. All those either distant or extremely quiet,

darkly feathered voices, one of night’s elements, one of its chapters.

Though what this one’s about, we don’t know, and likely do not want

to. Where are they anyway? Two blocks away, or right outside the

window in those densely-leaved and vaguely signing branches? And

before they were where were they? Words, more words. What have I