an afternoon walk

My phone can identify birds by their songs, but my body can identify children by their laughing and cars by their rate of acceleration. Trees by the wandering shape of their tiny new branches and flowers by the way they droop or stand up straight.
My eyes and ears, my heart and feet as I walk the asphalt or the cobbles or the stones embedded in cement. The pressure of my bladder because I drank too much water.

I absorb the sliver of moon that looks like a perfect, impossible fingernail tip. The quiet that isn’t really quiet because it includes the prop plane overhead and the heater keeping cozy people warm. The dog inside barking because they want to come out and play, and the silent cat outside lording it over them. Trees in every state from bare to green, with old leaves from last year still holding on while the rest of us wait for new green shoots. Magnolia buds that I always think are pussy willow and I guess I don’t know what a pussy willow is.

The sun is starting to set, now tiny lights illuminate intimate corners of homes and lives. Holiday lights are still celebrating seasons past while the new one is right here, snowdrops and hellebores.