Holding an almost-dead hummingbird in hand

Holding an almost-dead hummingbird in hand

It’s happened before.  At least two or three times over the years, a hummingbird has flown through the open doors and attempted to feed upon the bright orange hoist which hangs in the middle of the garage.  Once inside, the hummingbird flies up and cannot understand that flying down and out the door might lead to freedom.

Barry moved his boat outside today, and left the doors wide open for awhile.  He commented to me, while in the garden, that a hummingbird was flitting back and forth at the top of the ceiling, frantic, needing to feed, trapped. 

A little while later, while inside on the computer, I heard a knock on the door.  It appeared to be Barry.  I opened the door with a joke, “Hey, you don’t need to knock, come right in!”

The seriousness on his face stopped me in my tracks and I looked more closely.  He held a hummingbird in his hands and was attempting to get it to feed from the feeder.  Instead, it lay inert and looked pretty much dead.  He handed it over to me and I put my hands over the tiny beating heart-body and sent it love and energy and prayers.  Please, hummingbird, heal.  Please, hummingbird, live.  Please, hummingbird, stretch your tiny wings and fly.

We sat for a long time, the beating heart of the silent hummingbird and the hand which held it.  I kept putting the sharp tiny beak against the sugar-water.  Finally, she drank.  If you looked closely, it looked like she was spitting it out, then sucking it back in. 

Please, hummingbird, eat...

Please, hummingbird, eat...

She rested.

She opened her eyes.

She rested a lot longer.

Finally, she fluttered her tiny wings.  She drank, spitting out the liquid, drinking again.   She stood on her tiny feet and stretched and looked around.

The suddenly, with a huge burst of energy, she soared heavenward, up, up, up, toward the spruce tree!  And settled on a branch of the spruce tree, squawking loudly, the loudest hummingbird squawks you’ve ever heard.

I smiled and went inside, giving thanks.

Here are some more pictures ‘way back from another past life:  last Friday. Back when Scot and Karen and Doug and Gabe and Keely and myself drove a half hour out to Point Abbaye at the end of the peninsula, bouncing up and down on the sandy two-track.  The day was rainy and owly.  Look at this wave:

Huge wave breaks over the rocks

Huge wave breaks over the rocks

Point Abbaye  is a rocky peninsula that juts way out there in Lake Superior.  Not as far as the Keweenaw, but still out there.  There is no electricity out this far, no year-round houses.  Just the rocks and the lake and the wind.  It’s a place to meet the elements and feel their special gifts.

Scot, rocks, sky, water

Scot, rocks, sky, water

Jutting rock

Jutting rock

Doug peers out to sea

Doug peers out to sea

Keely hunches down near the waves

Keely hunches down near the waves

The extended family has returned home to the Thumb of Michigan now; our little house resumes its silence.  We had such a great time with the crew.  Barry has said (at least ten times) what a great time he had.  And Doug is now only a hop, skip and a jump away up at Michigan Tech.  What a gift!

Now, if we can just keep those hummingbirds out of the garage…

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