July 2008

A bat swoops past my face—a puff of wind. The interminable whistle of a train creeping toward the crossing. A sliver of moon.

A patch of a deer-tongue grass a mere three feet from my porch—how come I never noticed it before? Am I too busy to watch the grass grow?

In the almost still air, one long walnut leaf pivots like a hand on a wrist. A tiny caterpillar floats past my face on an invisible tether.

Clear sky, 55°F. A cicada and a wood pewee singing at the same time: Sunlight! Shadows! Up in the other house, the phones begin to ring.

Fast-moving showers; the light changes from minute to minute. A distant rumble turns out to be an A-10 Thunderbolt II—our modems are safe.

A rare visit from an Acadian flycatcher, straying up from the deep hollow. It hovers above a cherry branch, skimming insects off wet leaves.

A bat lands on the inside end of the porch—right above the moon from where I sit—and crawls rapidly on its elbows toward the nearest crack.

Glancing up from a book about Papua New Guinea, I see a doe and fawn crossing the yard and passing pale as spirits between the dark trees.

Two days ago, I spotted the first red branch of black gum. This morning, in the tops of locust saplings: that transcendent springtime green.