A sparrow hawk makes two small, fast circles over the ridge, just like a real hawk. A barberry bush has this year’s only flaming foliage.
A cedar waxwing alone in a barberry bush gobbles like candy its dull red pills—no match for the scarlet drops at the tips of his wings.
A fresh inch of snow. In the weak sunlight and bitter wind, three juncos huddle in a barberry bush above the stream, taking turns to drink.
Breezy and warm. A chipmunk scrambles through the blossoming barberry bush next to the stream, releasing waves of its sperm-like odor.
A honeybee investigates my thermos mug, brushing my finger with her wings. The barberry bush trembles from all the sparrows in it.
The barberry beside the stream is turning from the inside out: under a green cloak, salmon pink, blood-red beads, the hurdy-gurdy of a wren.
A titmouse scolds something hidden among blood-red barberries. The dead stiltgrass twitches with a second life like hair on a corpse.
Thick fog. A steady drumming of snowmelt on the porch roof. A bluejay in the barberry, out of what looks like sheer boredom, begins to yell.
The barberry bush, still red with fruit, is heavy with a second crop of snow. From its depths, a white-throated sparrow’s plaintive song.
A sharp-shinned hawk careens into a ditch beside a barberry bush where seven small birds have fled. It sits in the snow, eying them up.