Four more inches of dry powder. The stream has shrunk to the thinnest black ribbon between white cliffs—a body that refuses to be buried.
Seven cardinals—three pairs and a lone male—take turns drinking from the stream, then perch in the lilac’s bare branches, four feet apart.
The mockingbird in a bush beside the stream chases off other birds coming in to drink. A squirrel with only half a tail plods over the snow.
Cold and glittery. The stream has subsided to a quiet gurgle, and the nuthatch’s response to his tree is more of a comment than a question.
Overcast and cold. Juncos hop down the snowy streambanks for a drink. A female cardinal flies past—the extra red in her open wings.
Did it really rain hard last night, or did I dream that? The creek seems no louder. High against the clouds, a small hawk flaps and circles.
The almost Kabbalistic way a few syllables of thunder have birthed a whole lexicon of torrent. Fog takes a heavy eraser to the trees.
Above the roar of the creek, the first phoebe, phoebe, phoebe. Harlequin ladybirds are emerging from the walls of the house and flying off.
Sunrise: a glimpse of yellow from beneath the lid of clouds. Goldfinches flutter down to drink from the stream’s thin fissure of open water.
After days of a heavy inversion layer, it’s quiet at last. The snow’s gone. From a hole in the yard I can hear water trickling underground.