At last the garden cricket has a rival. They creak slowly back and forth. I scan the western sky for what’s left of last night’s moon.
A phoebe pecks at the porch roof, then lands in the cherry tree with its feathers puffed out against the cold. The waning moon.
Tundra swans at sunrise—their ethereal flutes, their shining white forms—are trailed by a local Canada goose and the crescent moon.
The crescent moon behind the trees gives the newfallen snow an antique cast. It’s very cold. A distant train is the only other moving thing.
Walking naked through the cold house at dawn, I’m startled by a bright light among the trees on the western ridge: the moon, big as a banjo.
By dawn, the clear sky has given way to white, as if the full moon spilled over. If the clouds were a true cover, they’d trap more heat!
For a half-hour after moonset, the sky is perfectly empty, the ground is still white. Then through the bare trees, this blemish of a sun.
A patch of silver in the yard: first frost. A jet glints in the rising sun, its short contrail twice as bright as the crescent moon.
Dawn fog lifts and pauses, so it’s clear to a height of ten feet, then white, then the crescent moon. A red-bellied woodpecker’s slow chant.
Just before dawn, the creak of a tree in the woods, and then in the yard. A bindweed in the garden aims its white blunderbuss at the moon.