March 2017

Bright sun, bitter wind. With the snow almost gone, the neighbors’ chickens must be out of their coop: the rooster crows and crows.

Sunlight at half-strength on the half-gone snow. Behind the house, a squirrel twists and rubs itself ecstatically against a rotten stump.

Wet snow clings to every branch and twig, making the forest look almost as inviting as it does in early May when the leaves are half open.

Thick fog, and the road gray with sleet that fell in the night. Three red-bellied woodpeckers are whinnying back and forth in the treetops.

I take off my hat to sunbathe as icicles drop, turning the roof toothless. The brass section tunes up: jay, cardinal, song sparrow.

Weak sun threading through the trees. The glint of microscopic flakes makes the air seem metallic. A white-throated sparrow’s wavering song.

Bitter cold with a wind. I sit with feet propped up as usual while snowflakes needle my cheek and pile up behind the ridges in my jeans.