Barely audible over the stream: claws on bark, slow footsteps. A porcupine’s round shadow crosses the yard and squeezes under the porch.
Ground-level clouds appear and disappear in the half-dark; even the thermometer is fogged up. Over the roar of the stream, a robin’s song.
The stream this morning is full of auguries, such as: “If you want to be master of all you survey, live in a ravine.” Carolina wren song.
Christmas—the quietest morning of the year. The stream is a full chorus. A pileated woodpecker flaps overhead, cheering itself on.