While waiting

We sat side-by-side on the warm concrete beside the water's edge. The sky above melted into the colors of night, fading from brilliant blue to the deepest red; the breath of summer hung in the air. We waited silently, alone, hoping to hear the deep bellowing of the bullfrogs hiding in the cattails. At first, we heard nothing. We watched the darkening sky and saw the haphazard flying of the bats chasing invisible insects; sometimes they dipped too close to us, and we covered out heads instinctively. She looked at me with her wide-eyes and whispered enthusiastically about what she saw, and I slowly raised my finger to my smiling lips. She smiled and crawled into my lap. We waited in connected silence, hearing only the throb of cicadas. After awhile, we heard a single trill of a tree frog across the pond. She pointed. Then there was another to our right, then another behind us. Suddenly a symphony of frogs echoed through the trees; the high pitched conversation swirled through my head and made me close my eyes. I took a deep breath and hugged her tightly. As quickly as the song started, it came to an end and we sat in silence again. The warm breeze pushed our hair into our faces and made us laugh. Still we waited, trying to be as quiet as possible. We watched a spider suspended in the air between two trees. Then saw another larger spider and studied it before we heard a single rrraaoowwnn rrraaoowwn rraaoowwnn coming from the tiny pool of water in front of us. Our eyes shifted from the spiders and strained to see any movement in the overgrown reeds. Nothing. One more time we heard the single bass call of the bullfrog. Its bellow combined with the trill of tree frogs and beating wings of cicadas in the dark, and created a confusing summer fugue of beautiful sound and unearthly stillness. I stood and picked her up and carried her closely to my body. We moved through the shadows of sound, our noses touching, and smiled at the secret we shared.