the clock ticks,
the dog next door voices his "let me in" bark,
and i sit here, as usual, ad infinitum,
with a cup of tea and a laptop and a window,
today the sky is gray, yesterday it was sunny,
today the air is still, yesterday there was wind.
the pine branch that flamed so bravely last fall is sill there,
a woodpecker investigates its rich, insect-ridden, hollow depths.
oak seeds litter the ground, the walks,
the chairs and picnic table in the garden.
the squirrels feast there daily, in spite of the dog
who once stalked them mercilessly
but now through deafness or benign neglect
we watch together, dog and i,