Among the leaves scudding past the porch, a stray snowflake. A blue seam opens in the clouds to the west where a raven is calling.
A raven flies croaking toward the sun, which is just breaking through the clouds. The rain-soaked forest is suddenly, shimmeringly aglow.
Sun a diffuse blob like a culture in a petri dish. Hoarse cries of a raven. Black walnuts are falling in groups now: a thunder of punches.
Something sets off the neighbor’s rooster, and a few moments later a raven flies past the porch, croaking like a duck with laryngitis.
Filmy-winged gnats are blown past the porch, pale as snowflakes in the strong sun. Overhead, the fierce cries of ravens playing in the wind.
Ten degrees above freezing at sunrise. A squirrel leaps through the soft snow like a salmon swimming upstream. High overhead, a raven calls.
Two ravens hang high against the clouds without flapping a wing. Two more appear and attack, croaking, and all four soar off to the north.
Alarm calls of jays give way to crows; the crows to a raven. With each corvid, the cry comes from higher in the blue—and closer to the bone.
Scattered crow caws coalesce into a flash mob filled with rage, but dissipate in less than a minute. High up in the clouds, a raven croaks.
The clouds of white snakeroot in my yard host one tiger swallowtail, glamorous as a celebrity in a trailer court. A raven’s metallic croak.