Jays, crows, and a raven: the solstice soundtrack. When I open my laptop, a red bead of a ladybug is huddled among the black keys.
Christmas Bird Count! Crow, junco, white-throated sparrow. Three chickadees, two nuthatches and a cardinal. Nothing in the damn pear tree.
Overcast and dreary. The neighbor’s rooster is drowned out by a train, its air horn blowing an almost perfect minor chord.
Colder, with a flat white sky and the ground lightly seasoned with snow. A lone nuthatch zigzags and spirals up the trunk of a tall locust.
A stalk of dried grass in the yard resembles a dancer, leaf-limbs vibrating ecstatically in the wind. The sun goes back in and she vanishes.
A bedraggled squirrel climbs the rain-slick elm snag and takes shelter in the old flicker hole, turning to peer out at the downpour.
A nuthatch and chickadee gadding about together, poking into everything. Nuthatch flies past my nose; chickadee balks and circles the house.
An oak up in the woods drops a top limb just as I am looking. The sky is gray and gravid with rain. The limb goes head-first like any diver.
A sharp-shinned hawk flying three feet above the ground arrows up into the woods. The faint hint of sun disappears behind thickening clouds.
Traffic noise blends with the ridgetop wind to form a single roar. In the thin snow behind my chair, the meandering tracks of a sparrow.