A large spider rappels sideways across the yard on an invisible thread, while a bee struggles to maintain its balance on the porch rail.
I feel watched, somehow. I spot a round gap high in the foliage, dark and deep. Then there’s the den hole in the elm, an empty eye-socket…
A trembling in the cattails: female yellowthroat. Birds flit through the treetops, smaller than the motes of grit in my ancient binoculars.
Sun shining through fog and the growing tents of fall webworms. A sharp-shinned hawk sits atop the dead elm, his head swiveling all around.
Overcast and humid. A Carolina wren trills in short bursts, as if in imitation of the crickets creaking in the long grass.
A furious buzzing from around the house where hummingbirds duel over the last few beebalm flowers. A half-grown fawn emerges from the woods.
A walnut leaflet falling into the yard rotates on its axis like a yellow spoke in search of a wheel. The brown dog lies panting in the sun.
Five nuthatches land in the walnut tree and begin scuttling up and down its trunk in the pouring rain, poking and probing the furrowed bark.
A scattering of white in my overgrown garden: soapwort, bindweed, fleabane, snakeroot. The sky brightens. A towhee calls from the lilac.
I marvel at how tall my tulip trees have grown, nonchalantly waving their leaves. “It was I who planted you! I who saved you from the deer!”
A phoebe flies back and forth between the sunlit treetops, criss-crossing the moon. I can hear the clicks of its bill as it catches insects.
While I’ve been gone, two invading armies have battled for control of the yard. The stiltgrass seems to be winning against the periwinkle.
The porch floor is blotched with pollen. Through the bright-green new leaves, the last few dots of sky are still visible above the ridge. * I’m off to the U.K., […]
Leaves blow backward, signalling storms to come. Fallen crabapple petals litter the ground between the cattails like bloody thumbprints.
The barberry bush above the stream is in bloom, demure rows of yellow bells that smell like sperm. A grackle flies up—his raspy call.
Cool and humid. Two male indigo buntings meet in the lilac bush and click at each other like angry blue Geiger counters.