There, where a thick growth of brush and trees was removed to make room for a new house, I can look over the roof of the completed garage and catch a glimpse of the distant ridges of the Sierra, beyond the canyon where Oroville Lake lies. Among the thick treetops that here lie lower than my line of sight, I hear the songs of those birds that never come to my more densely settled street. The day is hot, but the songs are surprisingly cooling. The view from this spot is all green forest and cloudless blue sky, but the songs are like colors for the ears.
In the distance, I see a black speck in the sky. It is a circling hawk. Though the birds nearby are singing all the while, I cease to hear them. My thoughts are with the hawk, and the hawk is silent. It flies lower, and vanishes into the canyon for a moment, then rises again and flies away behind the ridge to the south. It carries the silence with it. After a moment, I turn from the song filled canyon and head home through the calligraphed streets of the everyday world. I see no more hawks.