Ospreys, I am told, mate for life. One year ago, in a tall snag west of the mouth of the river, a pair of ospreys began to build an aerie. We were tickled pink. Ospreys! We could watch them at work right from the kitchen window. I guess this was only construction, because we saw no sign of fledglings, and by late August the pair was gone. This spring, in early May, a northeast gale -- 52 knots if you must know numbers -- toppled most of that new nest. But the big burned spruce hung on, a ragged clump of bird-placed sticks still tangled in its top. Well, we said to each other, you never know. Last week, one osprey appeared again. She, or he, circled and circled, high and away, back and around, again and again. So far up it was just a speck, and much too far from water to be fishing. Calling, soaring, circling, over and over, sending long raspy whistles down the breeze. Well, we said to each other, that's something new. You never know. Now it is another day, and the osprey is at it again. Rain today, with wind, and I am cold after being out in the boat trolling. (A couple of nice ones, if you must know.) The lone osprey circles and calls. I stand and watch, transfixed. And I can't help but wonder, my dear, which one of us two will be left alone sooner or later to circle what's left of our nest.