Two pairs of doves fly into the top of a tall locust and sit still as stones in the frigid wind, facing the pale moon, the crimson ridge.

A crow caws, and I’m struck by how much it resembles a barking dog. More crows, and the impression persists: Arf arf arf! A murder of dogs.

At first light, few other sounds than the fluting of doves’ wings. I hold my head perfectly still to watch Venus moving through the trees.

Sun thinned by a fleet of clouds the color of dirty dishwater. The wind in the pines is virtually indistinguishable from distant traffic.

Very cold, clear and still. My last dream before waking was of hummingbirds, and the trees at sunset shimmering with caterpillar tents.

Very cold. The woods seem unusually lifeless, and there’s a new creaking sound with every breeze. After a while, I realize: no squirrels.

Snow-covered hillside in the half-dark: every tree, bush and log adrift in blankness. The dog statue in the lawn still wears a white stripe.