Little sign left of last night’s ice storm, except beneath the black walnut trees in the yard: long, brown run-off stains on the snow.
The cellophane-crinkling sound of ice-sheathed branches swaying in the wind gradually gives way to the clatter of falling fragments.
The rain that drummed on the roof all night continues, but no longer turns everything it touches to ice like a cheap King Midas.
A faint shimmer of precipitation, and everything encased in a layer of ice as if the world’s been shrink-wrapped for overnight delivery.
Sun glints on ice-slicked branches and the glossy crust of the hardened snowpack. The distant, mechanical howl of a fire siren.
Freezing rain on a bed of sleet: like listening to thousands of pins dropping. A nuthatch ascends a tree head-first like a brown creeper.
A rattling rain of ice from the pear tree out back where a squirrel forages. Bird tracks in the snow below the porch end with wing-prints.
A maze of squirrel and sparrow tracks between ice-covered tufts of grass glittering in the sun. Down in the valley, a siren starts up.
The sun! Rising through treetops turned to blazing crystal. The red-bellied woodpecker foraging for breakfast sounds distinctly unimpressed.
Ice storm aftermath: bent trees and broken limbs that couldn’t withstand the sky’s smothering embrace. A tinny rattling when the wind blows.