Tuesday, November 26, 2013

November 26

The lake—all summer a demure gray, nearly invisible among the trees—now jumps out white in the new snow, recently frozen and blaring its pure trumpet self, like a hay field suddenly inserted into the woods. The ancestral goose clans are far away now, eating Chesapeake snails for Thanksgiving.

Climbing hill in snow,
more flakes tapping on my hat—
frozen ocean breath.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

November 24

Bitter cold. Stiff wind. Nose bleed. The dogs choose the shorter trail. Hummingbird nest in an umbra of twigs. Paperwasp nest in a cloud of berry canes. Both empty. In the snow, a drop of blood. In the distance, suspended above the brown fluff of goldenrod, a nebula of winterberry, cheerful and bright.

Fill your lungs with clean,
cold air—grateful for the fire
burning back at home.

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18

Locking up the barn after dark. The wind is kicking up—the cold coming back after a few days of sweet, mild sunshine. In the darkness, the ducks stir uneasily in their pen. A sky full of stars, except for one cloud in the east, black as the earth below, its top outlined orange by the hidden moon.

Inside the barn, hens
sleep in the dark. Inside them,
warm eggs wait their chance.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

November 2

The foliage has faded away, leaving the brown and black world of trunks and stems under a gray sky. Suddenly some yellow late-bloomer illuminates in fulsome gold the margin between orchard and woods--as quick, an orange reply in the shrubs at the foot of the slope. The cold is coming tomorrow: whatever you’ve got to say, say it now.

Sudden flame of rust
in gray woods. What’s that bird in
the apple? Towhee!