The black birch catkins are even longer and yellower than yesterday, shining in the rain. The shadbush have traded blossoms for pale leaves.

‪A red-tailed hawk flies just inside the woods’ edge, past the birches with their catkins and the rambling old lilac just coming into bloom.‬

‪The rhyming couplets of a brown thrasher. A blue-headed vireo’s dreamy soliloquy. When the sun comes out, raindrops glisten on every twig.‬

‪Something sets off the neighbor’s rooster, and a few moments later a raven flies past the porch, croaking like a duck with laryngitis.‬

‪The tulip tree’s leaves have burst their buds—a pale green cloud. A gnatcatcher in the shadbush darts and hovers like a slow hummingbird.‬

‪I can’t see the pear tree behind the house, but from time to time a few petals flutter down among the cabbage white butterflies in the yard.‬

Against dark clouds, the white blossoms of shadbush massed at the woods’ edge. A vole breaks cover in the yard: a gray streak.