‪Back to sweater weather. The catbird in the French lilac has found a mate—they’re hopping around apparently evaluating nesting material.‬

‪Overcast and cool. Two male catbirds are calling from the old lilacs in adjacent yards. The world is somehow still as it should be.‬

‪Three clumps of pale mushrooms have appeared in the yard, one bearing an old leaf aloft like an extra parasol. Waves of lilac scent.‬

‪A red-tailed hawk flies just inside the woods’ edge, past the birches with their catkins and the rambling old lilac just coming into bloom.‬

‪High in the lilac, a squirrel wedges a freshly dug-up walnut between three branches, descends, climbs back, retrieves it and carries it off.‬

In the steady rain, a winter wren sings his summer song at the woods’ edge; on a log over the creek; in the heart of the gold-budded lilac.

Sun gleams on the rain-damp leaf duff. In the blue sky, a grackle cackles. Blue jays jeer. The lilac limbs are beginning to blush green.