Before sunrise, I’m fascinated by the yard’s labyrinth of dead grass, that tangled thatch. A robin warbles for a while and falls silent.

Where yesterday the hillside was mostly white, now it’s mostly brown, and the dawn chorus is twice as loud with the addition of one robin.

In the mud bowl of the old robin’s nest that the wind blew out of the cedar tree, a fresh dusting of snow. The cardinal’s monotonous chant.

Cumulus clouds at two different heights: the lower ones move twice as fast. Lower still, a scattered flock of robins going the opposite way.

It’s not too hot to fight: a robin drives a chipmunk from the lilac. A minute later, a flicker drives a downy woodpecker off its den tree.

The female robin leaves her nest in the cedar and lands at the edge of the driveway, gives herself a thorough shake and takes a shit.

A convocation of robins in the tulip tree at the edge of the woods, like pot-bellied businessmen with their self-important tut-tut-tuts.

The robin hops down the road at his usual speed despite the cold. Five minutes later he flies out of the woods with a bright green morsel.

Another warm morning. I realize I like the dead cherry because it reminds me of winter. A young robin lands on a branch with its beak open.

A squirrel descends an oak at high speed while rolicking robin music plays in the background. Closeup on the maple buds round as stoplights.

Three inches of sticky snow have turned the trees white and intricate, with many moving parts: sparrows, robins, a blackbird’s creak.

Heavy frost, and the bare dirt in the garden has crystallized into icy turrets. Motes of snow float past, backlit by the sun. Robin song.

Colder this morning, and no sign of the phoebes that came back yesterday. A robin sings and falls silent. The sun comes out, goes in.