A chipping sparrow foraging in the dead grass takes a sudden, balletic leap. A mourning dove coos: hoarse, as if actually in mourning.
Censored by wind and distance, a mourning dove’s call retains only the middle notes, like a bell tolling for the long, slow death of winter.
A mourning dove duet, and that rising note—the first field sparrow of spring! An hour later, snow is blowing sideways.
This morning’s stillness is made of fresh snow, a distant jet, the quiet squeaks of a downy woodpecker and a dove’s whistling wings.
In the cool of the morning, I cup my hands to my ears and listen to wind in the grass, the hum of insects, the distant moans of a dove.
The mourning dove still calls at 9:30. A field sparrow’s accelerating notes: Hurry up! Hurry up! Daylight savoring time—when is that?
A mourning dove skimming the treetops flies off toward the northeast, the whistle of its wingbeats like something from the age of steam.
After last night’s rain, the snow fits each dip and hummock more tightly, like a garment shrunk in the wash. The creaking of doves’ wings.
Feathery contrails outline a wedge of blue. On a high branch, three mourning doves sit facing the sunrise. The middle one preens its wings.
So clear, even the mourning dove sounds joyful. Muffled thuds of a pileated in a dead tree, knocking—as Rumi would say—from the inside.
A shimmer so fine it takes me five minutes to ascertain that it is snow, not rain. Dove wings whistle and a raven croaks: no dry land here!
Quarry noise. What good are holidays if we can’t at least have some quiet? I concentrate on the dove wings’ one-note flutes, imagine angels.
A screech owl adds its quaver to the minimal dawn chorus: mourning dove coos, finch and sparrow chirps. Snow and highway noise on the wind.
Sunday morning rain is different; it’s quieter. The distant rumble I take at first for traffic on the interstate turns out to be thunder.
Right after a mourning dove’s song, a screech owl trills at the very same pitch. The sun floats free of the horizon and into the bluest sky.