downy woodpecker

Deep cold. Two chickadees invade the porch, fluttering noisily above my head. A downy woodpecker excavates breakfast from a resonant tree.

‪Outlined against the sky, the birch with its finches like leaves animated by separate winds. A downy woodpecker rattles in the cherry snag.‬

Overcast and cold. I am listening to the woodpeckers the way one listens to a marimba, savoring the varied, rich tones of dead wood.

It’s cold. Small groups of leaves scurry this way and that. The machine-gun rattle of a downy woodpecker on an especially hard hollow limb.

Sunrise tints the clouds orange. I squint through eyelids made bleary with pink-eye and lack of sleep. A downy woodpecker’s soft rattle.

Dark and rainy. A loud tapping from the far side of the cherry snag next to the porch where a downy woodpecker must’ve spent the night.