Button Bay would be my destination. December in Vermont and 38°. Clouds the color of snow-topped mountains. They held steady making me believe they also held time. I walked alone and yet in conversation. Noting the ducks that flushed; the sumac berries left behind. Noting the shift from red oak leaves beneath my feet to the absorbent nature of needles. Pine and hemlock. Pods of milkweed cracked open, seeds prepared to fly.
On my way out of the woods and into the field, the large moon rose before me, nesting in the empty limbs of what I believe to be a maple. It wasn’t until the moon was high and the sun was spreading the last pink light that I heard the geese. Coming. Hundreds of them. Masses of black silhouettes heading towards the bright moon. To my surprise, there was no ice in the bay, no ice on the ponds along my drive. I’m sure if this were a different year, I would still be out paddling.