A red-tailed hawk dives at a squirrel just as I come out. Then woodwinds: a V of geese followed by tundra swans. The first killdeer’s cry.
Warmish and rainy. From the valley to the east: a great blue heron with its sword-blade wings, its spring-loaded neck. A killdeer’s call.
Black-throated green warbler. I fetch my chair from the creek where the storm blew it. High over the neighboring valley, a killdeer’s cry.
Weak sunlight. Dead leaves are all a-rustle, rummaged through by squirrels, voles, chipmunks, juncos. The distant cry of a maybe killdeer.
Overcast and damp. The distant calls of a killdeer, returning from migration and spying the valley’s alluringly barren fields.
At first light, off in the fog, the weird, nasal calls of timberdoodles. One launches into the air with a whistling of wings.
Sound is out of the east: quarry trucks and grinders. In the gray woods, gray squirrels glide silently over the rain-slicked leaf duff.
Rain. In the marshy corner of the field, the duck-like calls of wood frogs, just up from their cryogenic sleep and already fully aroused.
Bright sun. From the valley, four gunshots in quick succession, followed by silence. A phoebe circles the house singing, as if sizing me up.
Sunrise tints the clouds orange. I squint through eyelids made bleary with pink-eye and lack of sleep. A downy woodpecker’s soft rattle.
Cloudy and warm. The first phoebe calls echo off the ridge like buzzy, two-note alarm clocks set for spring.
Strong sun; vociferous crows. It’s astonishing how many strands of spider web and caterpillar silk still shimmer in the trees.
Sunny and warm. A bluebird is warbling up by the barn and a song sparrow sings next to the springhouse.
Warm and clear. As the morning wears on, the traffic noise from over the ridge diminishes, leaving only the field sparrow’s ascending song.