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.
The corpse of a moth flaps upside-down against the column. Beyond the springhouse, a broken branch dangles—the leaves’ pale undersides.
Overcast at dawn except for a thin band on the horizon—enough for the light to leak through and spread its stain across the entire sky.
Orion gets one leg above the trees before fading into the dawn. Inside, I rescue the cricket from a spider, put him out for the fourth time.
Cloudy and cool. From the wood’s edge, a new song, wistful yet ebullient, from our most faithful, year-round singer, the Carolina wren.
From the vicinity of the powerline—a stripe of sunlight through the woods—the sporadic want… want… want of a buck coming into rut.
A cloudless sunrise. The woods are full of soft chirps—migrants, I suppose. Up by the barn, a phoebe calls for the first time in weeks.
Windy and cool at sunrise. A large squadron of geese comes low over the porch—non-migrant locals, no doubt, infected with restlessness.
High cumulonimbus drifting northward is the only sign of a hurricane’s distant churn. Tiny figures of birds head west toward the open sky.