In the summer, one imagines that the wind is singing through the leaves in the trees. Yet in the barren, leafless days of winter, I still hear the wind in the trees. As I stepped out the front door of the house, I was immediately aware of three things: the sun was so bright I could hardly keep my eyes open, the cold air found every bit of skin I hadn't covered with snow gear, and the birch trees on the back hill were singing as the winter wind gave them a voice.
As I made my way to the birches to the southeast, I heard other songs. Last autumn's corn stalks chanted softly in their native tongue.
The tiny creeklet that runs down from the stand of birch trees to join our creek before they both tumble south, was humming merrily.
I climbed up hill, dodging the thorny brambles that in the summer are loaded with wild roses and crimson berries. My graceless scramble up the steep hill in winter boots sent a little rabbit bounding away too quickly for me to photograph.
And then I was there, atop the hill, amid the birches and all around me was their song. In the early spring, little yellow violets bloom in this grove, their season so short that some years I miss it.
I moved back down the hill, with Miss Maudie leaps and bounds ahead of me, into the snow-filled marsh.
I followed the creek north toward the butterfly garden where these two dapper gents allowed me to take a couple of (not very good) photographs before they scurried up and over the back hill.
Maybe they will take a walk in the birch woods later too . It is a silvery place today, with the song of wind and birches trickling down from overhead and the winter sunlight streaming in through the branches.