The persistent rain has washed away every trace of snow, even in the undergrowth of the forest. This afternoon, though the sky remained heavy with clouds, the rain ceased, and I went for a walk through the grey evening. Twilight seems to begin shortly after noon on days such as this, when the clouds are so thick that the position of the sun cannot be discerned from any bright spot among them. In fact, the brightest patch of clouds appeared in the east, hovering over the mountains, until very near sunset when, at last, a bright, horizontal line of gold emerged above the trees in the southwest. When I returned home, there were two acorn woodpeckers on the utility pole in front of my house. Their bright red crests looked quite festive against the deepening grey sky. After sunset, the clouds began to thin above, and a few stars appeared. Through the trees to the west, I could glimpse a few clouds which lingered with pale noctilucece. The clearing sky presages a cold night. The small drops of water which hang like miniature ornaments from the tips of bush leaves may freeze. If the clouds remain at bay, perhaps I will see those drops glitter with reflected light when the waning moon rises above the pines.