sleet

Thick fog, and the road gray with sleet that fell in the night. Three red-bellied woodpeckers are whinnying back and forth in the treetops.

It’s still. The birds seem restless. Then the snow starts: mixed with sleet at first, then in big clumps, giving the ground a mottled look.

The whisper of sleet falling on sleet. A snowbird bursts from under my chair where it must’ve been foraging and joins the rest of the flock.

Yesterday’s snowfall has been sleeted and rained on, turning the hollow from a soundproofed room into an echo chamber for traffic noise.

The leaves on the sapling tulip tree are already big enough to blow backwards. A tanager’s plucked-string call. It begins to sleet.

The thermometer’s big arrow points straight at 0°C. It was too windy for frost, but fallen red maple leaves cradle white grains of ice.