A lull in the morning chorus. Contrails of all ages litter the sky like a boneyard. A woodpecker’s fast rattle.
Clear except for two contrails, fuzzy with age. Another scrap of gray paper has fallen from the old hornets’ nest, its lines blank as ever.
Sunrise, and a contrail becomes a golden sword pointing east. The waxy chatter of goldfinches in the treetops. The silence of the factories.
Blue sky; the scars from early-morning jets heal quickly. A male Carolina wren’s fulsome singing elicits as usual the female’s terse zzzzip!
The white porch railing is a landing-strip for butterflies: red-spotted purple, little wood satyr. A fat contrail lingers above the ridge.
The snowpack glitters in the sun. The soft chirps of foraging sparrows. A single jet trailing a short contrail in an otherwise empty sky.
The slow, silent drift of a contrail. Juncos silhouetted by the sun have silver linings, a fact of which they must surely be oblivious.
Bands of cirrus that might’ve been contrails two hours ago are crossed by a helicopter, ponderous and loud, like an enormous scarab.
Thirty thousand feet overhead, a south-bound jet turns to the southwest. Its boomerang-shaped contrail drifts slowly over the ridge.
Sunrise. I watch the slow drift of contrail graffiti: I, I, I at cross angles, until they merge and disappear into spreading clouds.
Cold and bleak. The clouds part above the ridge: a circle of blue bisected by a wide, shining contrail, the jet roaring just out of sight.
Parallel bands—old contrails—score the northeast sky. In the front garden, I spot a mantis egg case sparkling high in the witch hazel.
Every branch and twig is white with rime, and overhead, a latticework of contrails. Three crows skim the treetops on their way to a mobbing.
Against the sky criss-crossed by contrails, the sudden whiskers of a squirrel peering over the roof’s edge, fixing me in a bug-eyed stare.