Friday, July 10, 2009

Hawk Friend...

Driving back from Highlands this afternoon (I went to a really nice art show with my mom and Laurence), I saw a bird at the edge of the road, too close to harm’s way. I stopped short and turned into the Warwoman Dell, then walked back and across the road to find a young Broadwing hawk. It was standing, arms lifted a bit, on the edge of the road, not seeming to want to budge. I walked back across the road and broke off a Rhododendron branch with which to push him gently off the roadway. Rather than turn or walk, he simply fell over, onto the grass. Seeing that he wasn’t going to move to safety, I went to the truck to get a blanket, so I could take him someplace away from danger. I carried him across the road and down the Dell road a bit, near the creek. As I carried him across the road, I heard the call of his mother or mate. That was somewhat reassuring, though I did not hear it again in the 20 minutes or so that I remained there with him, nor did he speak. I got him some water from the creek and poured it into his mouth. After a long time of squatting there with him and feeding him water, I stood up and pondered leaving. Just then, I looked down and a worm was wiggling its way up to me, edging at my shoe. I took this to mean I should feed the bird. I tried to feed him, and he actually went for the worm a bit, but then it wiggled out of my hand and wormed into the earth. I managed to coax it back out and tried again, but still didn’t manage to get it into the beak. Finally I decided to go, and that I would come back and check on him and in the meantime call Michelle for advice. When at the mexican store for tacos, I asked for some raw meat to go back and feed to him. But when I got back to where I had left him, he was gone. I looked around for him, and was reassured to find that he had pooped on an elevated log. This told me that he had snapped out of his shock, perched for a bit and flown off. It was such an amazing gift to be able to hold this creature. His eyes were surprisingly grey. He was incredibly light - seemed to weigh nothing at all. He was gentle and scared. His talons sharp and black on thin yellow feet. His feathers seemed loose and there were a couple of places where they had gaps, or just parted - those places showed white downiness. He simply stood there with his beak open a bit, tongue moving sometimes, and wings held awkwardly up and slightly away from his body. When I moved around him, he stiffened a bit and looked square at me, with those big, grey eyes wide and beak agape. What a gift. I sent him a lot of love and tenderness. As much as I wanted to see him again and know him, I am so glad he flew away before my return. Perhaps now he is hunting rodents in the light of dusk.

3 comments:

Adam Stoltman said...

What a lovely story.......

Clarity said...

This is an amazing story. I know of one other person that helped a bird. They were exceptionally kind as you are. I think that bird will remember what you did.

What a beautiful experience.

Atlsat said...

Beautiful story Honor, you are such a kind and gentle soul. Hopefully nature, in some way, will return your act of concern and compassion.

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