The lace-work of leafless treetops against the clouds. No wonder the dead cherry with its cluster of six limb-stumps reminds me of despair.
Gray sky. A gray squirrel emerges from the tiny attic opening in the springhouse roof and falls head-first into the cattails.
A heavy frost whitens tree branches fifteen feet off the ground. It’s so quiet, I can hear people talking a quarter mile away.
Cold and clear. The hissing of a nearby air compressor blots out all birdsong. It sounds like nothing so much as really loud silence.
In one and the same moment, the howl of an accelerating speedbike, a train whistle, and the quiet anxious calling of a nuthatch to its mate.
The soft-edged shadows glimmer with frost; the stripes of dim sunlight glisten. Only the Carolina wren insists on clarity, clarity, clarity.
An immature redtail studies the ground from a low limb, drops into the weeds and comes up empty. High overhead, three Vs of tundra swans.
The big tulip tree at the woods’ edge is releasing its seeds, spinning blades backlit by the sun. The cedar by the door trembles with birds.
Unseasonably warm. A raucous flock of juncos courses back and forth behind the house. Squirrels chase at top speed on the forest floor.
The fourth-quarter moon is the thinnest of Cheshire-Cat grins among the treetops. Sunrise reddens the western ridge. A nuthatch calls.