Clear and cold at the crack of dawn. A propeller plane comes blinking out of the east, banks and follows the mountain south, engine fading into a quiet trickle from the spring.

My first day on earth without a father. It takes me ten minutes to notice the sky—cloudless blue. The laboring engine of a distant plane.

The least gloomy morning in more than a week—and also the coldest. A single-prop plane goes in and out of sunlight, trailed by its sound.

Three propeller planes in half an hour, noisy as airborne lawnmowers. It’s peak haiku time, but I could disappear into a novel.

The den hole in the dead elm seems less than empty, like an eye socket in a skull. A single-prop plane goes over, hidden by the clouds.