pine siskin

A raven croaks somewhere above the ridge. Snow fine as flour. A Brownian cloud of small birds scuds over the treetops: pine siskins.

Siskins like moveable leaves in a bare birch. A squirrel chiseling a skull-hard walnut falls silent when it reaches the soft cerebrum.

Windy, with mottled gray and white clouds and a muddy yellow smudge for the sun, as in a fingerpainting. A siskin’s sharp-edged note.

I keep hearing fragments of song—winter wren, bluebird, song sparrow—and the usual tight flock of siskins in a walnut tree going zzzzzzip.