The winter woods seem empty but there is feathered movement between the branches. Greys and greens are suddenly broken by a rusty smudge as a chickadee swings close with crackling curiosity.

He is like a lit match in the gloom. So much intensity in one small creature. Winter does not phase the chickadee. Impervious to cold snaps and icy winds, he forages in the same exuberant manner as though on a summer day.

A  bright eye watches me watching and I witness the eternal spark of spirit in an adornment of feathers.