A few minutes after six, a whippoorwill calls from just inside the woods. At the very same moment, the first mosquito of the day finds my ear.
Sun glimmering in a sky so light blue as to appear white. The Carolina wren’s motor sounds as if it’s running out of gas. Mosquitoes begin to circle.
A mosquito rests on the arm of my Adirondack chair, watching the sunrise. A hummingbird surprised by a sudden movement buzzes toward me rather than away.
Showers intermittent as stragglers in a race. This morning’s porch may stretch into the afternoon, as long as my claps keep up with the mosquitoes.
A mosquito sings her dark need into my ear. Day advances like a slow machine of squeaking towhees and whirring wrens.
A wood thrush is singing in the distance. I shoo away the mosquito singing in my ear to listen.
The catbird mews and warbles, a hummingbird rockets back and forth, but it’s the mosquito’s still, small voice that gets my attention.
Daybreak. A buck sniffing the ground for signs of estrus scratches his head with a back hoof. A mosquito sings into my ear.
Overcast at sunrise. The woodpeckers’ percussive breakfasts. A mosquito wanders over my propped-up feet.
Overcast and cool. A few bars from a mystery vireo. A mosquito’s whine becomes a smear with a clap of the hands.
Overcast and rainy. in the dim light, sunrise is evidenced only by the appearance of mosquitoes. One after another they land on my knuckles.
Sunrise hidden by clouds. Towhee and cardinal’s usual soliloquies. A mosquito sings her need into my ear.
Perhaps just a bit fewer mosquitoes this morning. The double knock of a stone shifting under a squirrel’s weight.
Somewhere nearby, the bugling of geese. A red-breasted nuthatch goes up and down each branch of a small walnut. Mosquito: a blur on my nose.