The feral garlic top-heads have split their skins, unveiling clusters of beady eyes. The sun’s a glowing smudge. It’s going to be hot.
A bindweed flower is open in the garden—a white blunderbuss pointed, like the dog’s inquisitive snout, at the foggy woods.
Tussock moth caterpillars rappelling from a walnut limb. One changes its mind half way—a little white comma returning to its green sentence.
The box turtle whose territory my house happens to encroach upon sits in the driveway, yellow markings like a road sign in a foreign script.
Far off through the woods, the bell-like notes of three wood thrushes—young ones mastering the music of their tribe before they disperse.
A wasp flying in low sunlight: hind legs dangling bright orange, and behind her thin waist the black, banded abdomen shaped like a bomb.
Deep blue sky, with the sun gilding the treetops. A bumblebee circles the bergamot patch, her small engine running fine despite the cold.
A rare fine day—everything’s so clear, so bright! An enormous horsefly lands on my leg and for a long moment I study the blade in its mouth.
A new face in moss on the trunk of the big maple: bulbous clown nose, Mona Lisa smile. A dragonfly quarters over the permanently damp yard.
The wild black currants are succumbing to their usual wilt—an extra shadow eating them from the inside as the stream gurgles between them.
Now that thistles are going to seed, the goldfinches are nesting at last. Two males chase—streaks of crayon-yellow through the treetops.
A lone stalk of whorled loosestrife stands amidst the flattened stiltgrass, its blossoms overturned by last night’s storm. The stream roars.
Cool and quiet. A female hummingbird ignores the bergamot to drink from the soapwort, their plain, pale faces glowing in the weak sunshine.
Clear and cold as October, with an inversion layer to match: the rising sun grinds and thunders with the sound of the quarry to our east.
The dark green wall of the woods begins to vibrate—a shimmer of mizzle. The dog’s muzzle rotates, nose twitching. A cedar waxwing’s whistle.
Fog gives way to mid-morning haze. The neighbors’ rooster doesn’t so much crow as moan. I listen to cardinal song and imagine it’s February.