title inspired by “Faint Music” by Robert Hass.

The stillness of just-before-dawn is no longer a rare treat,
But it is a luxury nonetheless;

Even waking with a clenched fist in my abdomen
On the couch that once held people I love
And now holds only blankets.

Before the car horns and the sirens and the daylight,
There are only bird songs
Tentative, beginning.

For a moment, I could be in my childhood bedroom,
Almost ready for a new day of see-what-happens.

I think they call that grace.

A professional lifelong learner.