It looks like rain, it smells like rain, but the morning passes without a drop. The goldfinches carry on being garrulous. A tree frog calls.
A pileated woodpecker comes yammering into the treetops and proceeds to groom, his clown-red crest flashing as he scratches under his wing.
A green darner zips back and forth, reversing direction so abruptly it looks like a jump cut. From behind the house, the burbling of a wren.
Hoarse cries of a lone Canada goose—I scan the sky and see nothing but blue. A monarch butterfly arcs through the shadows in the yard.
I sit scribbling in a notebook, a pearl crescent butterfly weaving between the legs of my chair. It comes to rest with one wing in the sun.
It’s hot. At last the annual cicadas sound fully charged. The air is alive with tiny insects in non-intersecting orbits back-lit by the sun.
The cloying smell of goldenrod from below the porch. A flower fly comes up to inspect my tan khaki trousers, hovering an inch from my knee.
At just half-light, the young rooster in the neighbors’ coop begins to crow. But the distant train whistle still has more depth, more soul.
Dawn is the original thief in the night. Sleepless from a fever, I stare disbelieving at the sky’s stain of light as a screech owl trills.
Passenger pigeons went extinct 100 years ago today. What teems like that now? Only humans, other invasives, the increasingly odd rain.
In the steady rain, the cheerful bickering of goldfinches. A mosquito brushes against the hair on my arm, looking for a clear way in.
The neighbor’s rooster is beginning to sound like a rooster. I notice that one side of the big maple has turned prematurely red.
In the shadows of the trees, the grass bent low by dew. From the sunlit meadow, the drone of cold-hardy bumblebees servicing the goldenrod.
A cicada starts his electric saw and stops. It’s too cold for cicadas. The sky’s a deep blue. A walnut leaf curled like a boat floats down.
Light from the rising sun diffracts off a spider web in the eaves, turning it all the colors of the rainbow as it trembles in the wind.
Blue sky above the fog. The sun stretches long white spider legs into the woods. The cackle of a pileated woodpecker, followed by wingbeats.