It began with skeins of of geese flying in from the south and singing their return, with happy duck splashings in local waters and much quacking in roadside puddles, with a single heron perched on the shore of Dalhousie Lake and wondering why on earth she came home so early in the season.
It continues with larks and killdeer, beaky snipe and woodcock, with a handful of plucky robins, the graceful "v" shape (dihedral) of five turkey vultures soaring majestically over the Two Hundred Acre Wood and rocking effortlessly back and forth in their flight. From below, the light catches their silvery flight feathers and dark wing linings, and the great birds are as magnificent as any eagle.
A solitary goshawk perches in a tree on the hill, and a male harrier goes looping over the western field in graceful circles. Both birds are hungry after their long journey north, and they train their fierce yellow eyes on the field below, ever on the lookout for a good meal.
This morning, a male cardinal is singing his heart out in the ash tree in the garden, and an unidentified spring warbler lifts its voice somewhere in the darkness.
There is gladness everywhere, and even the soft rain is a friend.