contrails

The white porch railing is a landing-strip for butterflies: red-spotted purple, little wood satyr. A fat contrail lingers above the ridge.

The snowpack glitters in the sun. The soft chirps of foraging sparrows. A single jet trailing a short contrail in an otherwise empty sky.

The slow, silent drift of a contrail. Juncos silhouetted by the sun have silver linings, a fact of which they must surely be oblivious.

Bands of cirrus that might’ve been contrails two hours ago are crossed by a helicopter, ponderous and loud, like an enormous scarab.

Sunrise. I watch the slow drift of contrail graffiti: I, I, I at cross angles, until they merge and disappear into spreading clouds.

Cold and bleak. The clouds part above the ridge: a circle of blue bisected by a wide, shining contrail, the jet roaring just out of sight.