Night falls on Chappy. With it, falls rain. A mother and child run over the grate of the ferry landing, hopping puddles to the parking lot, where their car beeps a welcome unlocking. A captain waves goodbye and hopes for more CNN and less SUV. Mostly though, we are indoors now. We are stirring sauces. We are cleaning lint filters. We are watching the flames behind wood stove doors. We are working. We are playing. We are resting. We are, as we will be more and more, inside.

The outside has its life back now, free of our distraction. The skunks paddle their bark gondolas through the rain-swollen lowlands, water running the rail of their white stripes. The owls take their baths in the rut of the road, pumicing their under-feathers with the grit. A hawk rides the wind, opening its beak to take tastes of rain that have not yet tested the tree tops. The rabbits down the path splash their ridiculous feet through the puddles and into the brush. A swallow stands on a bramble thorn, impressing friends with her balance. Pines lose their needles to the ground, the dirt smiling up for the gift of the cover, the pines smiling down for the gracious acceptance. There will be more needles, they know. The deer swim in the pools of the newly departed wealthy. Marco. Polo. The crabgrass bids adieu, its brown leaves shedding rain, leaving the water for the fescue. A crow, a raven, a grackle and blackbird argue noisily the merits of good grub. A cardinal listens.

The Yankees host the Phillies, filming the affair for the pleasure of others. Some of us will watch them soon. Inside. Away from the rain. And the night. We have our springs and summers. The outside has its falls and winters. Our paths cross, then diverge, each traveler glad for the other’s absence.

Gazette contributor Brad Woodger lives on Chappaquiddick.