A house wren ascends a stepladder in the steady rain. With a sudden crack, the cherry tree beside the porch sheds a dead branch.
A female indigo bunting drops into the cherry tree to snack on tiny tent caterpillars, reaching daintily into their vase-shaped nest.
The bottom half of the porcupine-girdled cherry tree is in bloom; the top is lifeless. You’d think the news would travel from the ground up.
Buds swell on the ornamental cherry beside the porch, unaware that porcupines have girdled the trunk. April Fool! You’re dead.
Patter of rain from a leaden sky. Mouth-shaped wounds on the cherry tree where the porcupine chewed it—by far the brightest spots of color.
The cherry tree beside my porch is at its fragile peak of color, bright orange leaves fluttering loose from a clusterfuck of diseased limbs.
A small buck wanders past, the gray-brown gleam of a November woods already in his antlers. Snowbirds in the cherry tree, their soft calls.
First sign of dawn: the moonlight on the leaves of the cherry tree begins to lose its luster. A distant military jet breaks the stillness.
A least flycatcher materializes in the cherry tree, finds three invisible morsels on as many leaves, issues a crisp che-bek! and flies off.
Hazy but cool. A cranefly bumbles over the cherry tree on its too-long legs, its too-small wings, like a marionette with invisible strings.