A few oaks are turning brown behind the birches’ washed-out yellow. High on a bare limb, a squirrel nest the exact shape of a porcupine.
The hiss of the wind. Oak leaves scud above the treetops in one direction while juncos and sparrows move through the weeds in the other.
Yesterday’s snow lingers in the shadows and drips and slides from the leaves, filling the treetops with rustling. Vultures spiral overhead.
Another too-warm morning: late April without the warblers. Three dried oak leaves launched into flight by the wind circle like doomed hawks.
A small hawk flies through the forest in steady rain, perches in the crown of an oak for several minutes, and flies on. The wind picks up.
A pileated woodpecker trepanning an oak to extract its harmful inhabitants the ants. Distant shots from deer hunters at a similar task.
High winds. The chairs huddle together at the end of the porch. Oak trees rattle; the pines roar. A sparrow flies into the wind, chittering.
The neighbor’s leaf blower, that insect whine. I worry about the oaks that still have leaves—snow is coming, the kind that breaks limbs.
Hoarfrost costumes the yard, sparkling in the sun for a few minutes of glory. Oaks that looked brown under clouds glow orange and red again.
Rain past, the sky brightens. Great crowds of oak leaves are taking the plunge. A freight train whistles an almost perfect minor chord.