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Poem from Mom: Hummingbird Chili

April 23, 2010

“Hummingbird Chili”

the dreaded tap on the cabin window
just above the bench where the cats sleep
they leap for the birds that fly into that window
I run for the door leaving my pot of chili simmering
HELP ME LORD! get to that bird before the cats do
TOO LATE! there stands my beautiful bobtail cat
with a yummy dead looking hummingbird
clenched firmly in her mouth
BUT WAIT! is it REALLY dead
or is there a miracle nearby waiting to happen
I left the grocery bags from yesterdays shopping
hanging on the inside of the porch door
I grab them and throw them fast and hard at bobtail
who is giving me a dirty watch your step mama look
PRAISE BE! she drops the tiny destressed bird
I carefully quickly pick it up
the hummingbird sits in my hand recovering
blinking its eyes and changing its footing frequently
for the rest of its handmade hospital stay
as we sit in the morning sun pondering
this tiny beautiful trusting creature
makes me realize how fragile we are
how much we need to look out for each other
how much we need to trust and love
as I return to the chili to give it a stir
a hummingbird feather
slowly falls off my flannel shirt sleeve

and drifts into the pot

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