Little birds — sparrows, juncos, chickadees — dance at the feeder, filling their bellies. A red-tailed hawk hides in the trees at the back of the pond, waiting patiently as snow and wind whirl and howl. I wonder if he is contemplating the animal tracks in the snow and on the ice, hoping to manifest breakfast. Pema Chödrön said, “Give up all hope of fruition,” because hope robs us of the present moment. The hawk abandons hope and swoops. Breakfast has arrived.
Fresh snow accumulated overnight, redrawing the lines of the landscape. The birds gather around the feeder, some on the ground scratching for fallen seeds buried in the snow. A red-tailed hawk perches on a high branch in a tree at the edge of the meadow, watching. Waiting. A fine white powder, barely visible, is being squeezed and sifted from the clouds overhead, falling softly, silently, in a straight line from sky to ground. The air is still. The raspy screech of another hawk somewhere off in the distance is carried across the hills and the pond.
I wonder why all the birds don’t fly south to escape the cold and snow, leaving us birdless for a season.