May 14: On the expansive restaurant deck I savored my beer, river views and the mild evening. But most of all I enjoyed the company of three work colleagues. We have talked on Zoom almost daily for fourteen months. We are so much more interesting in three dimensions.
May 15: I’d left the screen door partly open to our patio. Overnight, Brood X cicadas found their way inside the screen. When I opened the sliding glass door, I found them molted and clinging, with no direction home. Using spoon and towel, Jeremiah and I lifted each one to freedom. And then all day we had to be sure not to crunch them underfoot.
May 16: I was standing in the kitchen when Jere reached an arm around me and pulled me to his chest. I recalled, when he was little, doing the same to him. You were the perfect size, I said. Squeezing me closer, he said, I’m the perfect size now.
May 17: I saw a ten-year old boy lift his arms to offer a partly furled flag. An older girl in a plaid skirt and white blouse reached down from her pedestal, one arm gripping the flagpole. Another girl balanced and gripped too. They’d already affixed the American flag. And when I drive past the school again in a few minutes I know I’ll see their work done.
May 18: I placed a low-hanging bird feeder before my office window. I was confident I’d entice the robins nested in the Nandina and the sparrows and cardinals from the curbside bush. My first and only customer so far: a very inquisitive deer.
May 19: I walked across the new pedestrian bridge, alone in the quiet afternoon. I caught a movement to the side and watched as a man, in vest, helmet and the bucket of a cherry-picker, rose outside the bridge to my eye level. We exchanged greetings and went on about our bridge business.
May 20: I’ve seen the Milky Way just once; it truly looks like the splash of a bucket of milk flung across the sky. So, today, was the birdsong that awakened me well before dawn. The layers and textures of sound; the variety and random intensities; and so many voices beyond my power to discern. I know the birds will call to each other throughout the day. But their breathtaking exuberance to welcome the dawn flung joy into the air. I must remember, when the day gets hard, to sip it.
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