Snow-covered hillside in the half-dark: every tree, bush and log adrift in blankness. The dog statue in the lawn still wears a white stripe.

Gray sky with streaks of blonde. A house finch turning its squeaky wheel goes all up and down the scale—a tangle of notes.

Spindly icicles glitter on the eaves, stunted by too little of the white soil they need to grow, thinned by too much of the life-giving sun.

A new skim of snow on the gray-brown surface of the world. Scattered flakes so small and light they hardly seem to be headed for the ground.

Headlights briefly rake the porch. Then back to darkness, inhabited by wind, running water, and hunters climbing quietly into the trees.

Canada geese en masse may remind us of choiring angels, but a lone goose sounds ridiculous, like a boy with a changing voice trying to sing.

A second day of warmth and a strong inversion layer. This morning the air is loud with trucks; by afternoon it will be teeming with insects.

Almost as warm outside as in. Two deer trot past, their gray coats shining, the trees behind them dark from last night’s rain.