The dame’s-rocket in my yard has reached the late baroque stage of flowering, clumps as chubby as cherubs flying out from the main stalks.
A light mist rises from the rain-soaked grass. Just as I’m writing this, a hummingbird buzzes in to inspect the red lettering on my T-shirt.
Cool and humid. A chickadee and bluebird perch side by side in the walnut tree before flying down into their respective holes in the stump.
Cool at sunrise, and with warmer air aloft, the roar of the quarry to our east rolls in over the ridge as if it were the sun’s own engines.
Cloudy and cool. The springhouse phoebes hawk flies and mate at the edge of the woods, trailed by two fledglings with beaks agape.
The rain starts just as I come out onto the porch. White blossoms atop a black locust tree fade into the crowd of leaves mirroring the sky.
The oriole’s glossy song. Up in the woods, a deer snorts in alarm for half an hour, until I think a bear or coyote must’ve found her fawn.
A warm morning. The yard is filled with the bright wings of insects drifting up and down, back and forth against the dark woods.
The white porch railing is a landing-strip for butterflies: red-spotted purple, little wood satyr. A fat contrail lingers above the ridge.
Three degrees above freezing. The dead vireo in my garden is perfectly preserved except for its missing eyes—red prizes for ants.
The decrepit stump next to my porch now houses a second nest: chickadees have moved into the hole below the bluebirds. Sun. A distant raven.
Momentary things: A chipmunk pressing the rain from its fur. The swaying of a branch from which a grackle has just taken flight.
Cold and windy. Maple seeds spin down from the overcast sky, as if some psychotic cherub were plucking the wings from chitinous angels.
A tiger swallowtail flies past in one direction, a cabbage white in another. I sit reading Rubén Darío until everything seems symbolic.
It’s wild mustard season, the yard dotted with purple dame’s-rocket, white garlic mustard, and among the cattails a riot of yellow rocket.
Heard but not seen: a hummingbird skirmish. The mist thickens to drizzle, and right on cue a yellow-billed cuckoo—so-called rain crow—calls.