In the lily-of-the-valley bed decimated by drought, five blood-colored beads. The wind shuffles the leaves on the porch like playing cards.
The trees are restless with rumors of distant storms. From somewhere nearby, the urgent chirps of nestlings whose parent has just returned.
Sun one minute, rain the next. The plastic flamingo bobbing in the wind keeps her eye on the weeds: cleavers, soapwort, cypress spurge.
Bright sun’s illusion of warmth, dispelled each time the wind blows. The only white in the sky is a tall Amelanchier’s cloud of blossoms.
High winds continue. The other white plastic stack chair suddenly turns, slides off the porch and topples into the fresh half-inch of snow.
Curtains of rain blow this way and that. The crack of branch. Bits of gray paper come flying loose from the old hornets’ nest under the eaves.
Birds keep landing on the empty feeder, like kids in a home with an unpaid cable bill staring at the TV. The wind pages through my notebook.
Rain past, the hollow is full of birds. Fast moving clouds. A Carolina wren sings exultantly through a high gust of wind.
Cold, with an icy breeze that creeps under both my hoods. A dusting of snow. The distant sound of a door slamming shut.
A half-inch of wet snow blew in so fast, it’s plastered to the sides of trees in lumps. From up on the ridge, the white noise of the wind.