The frogs started their evening peeping about a week ago. The calendar said they were right on time but their reemergence from the mud marshes was surprising given recent northeast winds, subfreezing temperatures and a landscape still stuck in the throes of winter.
But there is nothing so welcome as finding myself invited to a spontaneous nocturnal concert I had not anticipated. I open the back screen door and down the steps to hear them exercising their chirpy melody, louder then softer then louder once more, then suddenly stopped altogether as if their air had been cut off. There are several beats of silence until one lonesome frog is courageous enough to pick up the tune solo, and the rest, encouraged, join in once again.
Winter is truly past when this chorus concert becomes a nightly fest. We are moving on to longer days and noisy nights, to the rush of sprouts and buds and hatched eggs.
And to think it all starts with a peep.