Sitting in the garden while the porch’s new coat of paint dries, I notice the peony leaves too have turned red. A waxwing’s glossy calls.
A succession of anxious or querulous calls—nuthatch, crow, Cooper’s hawk, pileated woodpecker—until sunrise reddens the western ridge.
The valleys must be brimming over with fog. Clouds rise behind both ridges, but it’s blue overhead: a white-bread sandwich filled with sky.
Due to the drought, the goldenrod display is subdued this year—but birch are turning three weeks early. September will have its yellow.
Walnut at the tip of a bent-down limb: a squirrel gets close, retreats, tries again. Abandons the tree for an oak, tail twitching.
Birdcalls are distant, intermittent. I’m reading about Auschwitz and thinking, it’s vital to learn the names. Someday it may be all we have.
First rays of sun on the garden, and already a monarch is drinking from the half-opened asters, orange panes of its wings trembling, aglow.
Ground fog forms at dawn in the bottom corner of the meadow and quickly dissipates. The screech owl’s quaver gives way to soft thrush calls.
Rain at last! A gentle tapping on the roof. The parched aster in my garden half-opens its first purple eye.
I hear it before I see it through the trees, crackling and popping in the tinder-dry sticks and leaf litter: a small herd of deer.