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.
Two degrees below freezing, but the rain remains rain. Somewhere above the fog, an airplane’s single propeller.
Two oak leaves are caught by a birch, one after the other. From somewhere in the clouds, the buzzing rattle of a plane with a loose part.
Frost on the bent-down blades of cattails. Two single-prop planes from different directions—their drones blending then separating again.
Three propeller planes in half an hour, noisy as airborne lawnmowers. It’s peak haiku time, but I could disappear into a novel.
The drone of a single-prop plane, hidden like the horizon by trees. A mourning dove calls. The sun slowly submerges in a mud bath of clouds.
Quiet except for a distant plane. A pair of squirrels race nose-to-tail through the yard, slowing only when they clamber through the lilac.
The rooster’s call is still all wrong—despairing rather than jubilant. An airplane engine drops in pitch as it fades into the distance.
A black ichneumon wasp climbs the white porch column, wings twitching like an ill-fitting suit. The lawnmower sound of a propeller plane.
A single-prop plane circles high over the valley for more than an hour—flying lesson? A missing child? The dry rattle of chipping sparrows.
As daylight gathers, the sky goes from white to gray. A train whistle trailed by its rumble of freight. The distant propellers of a plane.
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.
The sound of a single-propeller plane—a rare thing nowadays—draws my eye to a hawk circling a thermal high over the ridge’s glossy snowpack.