Overcast and cool. Last night’s storm has left the Japanese stiltgrass sprawled this way and that, its stalks just beginning to turn red.
Sun glimmering through thin, high clouds. The distant rumble of a train. In the long grass, each drop of dew begins to shine.
White sky with distant crows. The stiltgrass in the meadow is still lying low after a thunderstorm yesterday at dusk.
Sunrise thunderstorm: the sky darkening just when you least expect it, then the downpour and all the leaves of grass nodding like headbangers as the thunder booms.
Cold and quiet. A junco foraging in the stiltgrass chirps after every beakful. A five-squirrel parade snakes past the yard: mating season.
Clear and cold. I see that the stiltgrass stems have all turned color in the yard—a chaos of feathery green threaded through with red.
Autumn comes from the ground up: stiltgrass stems reddening as bracken fronds bronze, while funnel spiderwebs snag the fog.
So much song from a single robin perched 80 feet up in a black locust! Down below, juncos comb through the prone stiltgrass for seeds.
Overcast. A strong smell of sewage from the treatment plant two miles away. Juncos forage in the dead stiltgrass, chirping back and forth.
A few, tiny patches of snow linger behind clumps of dead stiltgrass. The sun blazes through the thinning crown of an oak; I start to sneeze.
All the most supine stiltgrass has grown white fur in the night. Two nuthatches foraging at the woods’ edge react badly to my sneeze.
Like hair on a head the way the stiltgrass falls about in orderly whorls. A raven flies over, hoarse cries out of sync with its wingbeats.
Among the died-back stiltgrass below the porch, a cluster of native deer-tongue grass has emerged, pointed “tongues” just beginning to curl.
From under a hat brim ablaze with sun, I gaze out at the stiltgrass glazed with frost. Jays in the treetops. Falling acorns tick and tock.