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Location: Midwest, United States

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

* * *

I ventured onto my balcony to inhale a snootful of crisp, spring air. Today was a day of both bright sky and storm clouds. Black clouds drifted sporadically through the azure-blue to deposit fat droplets that plopped lazily against the deck and railing...only to mystically disappear.

I was hoping to see a rainbow. What I saw was something far more profound.

I spied a red-tailed hawk winging its way skyward. And hot on that crimson tail was a common sparrow. The hawk swooped and cart-wheeled as the sparrow, wings beating furiously, struggled to keep up. The hawk dove, careened, sprinted towards the sun. And the sparrow? Well, the sparrow did not relent in its attack. What it lacked in dexterity, it compensated for with tenacity. Size wise, it was akin to a rowboat harassing a luxury yacht. But the sparrow would not relent. And the hawk could not wing free.

What caused all this ruckus? I’ll venture two guesses: the hawk had devoured a fresh, new egg...or...the hawk had feasted on a fledgling. No matter. The sparrow was hell-bent on vengeance, and the hawk had reason to regret its transgression.

There are forces in Nature beyond my comprehension: magnetism, gravity and nuclear fission, to name but three. They pale in comparison to the bond between a mother and child. Heaven forbid
I should stumble betwixt a momma grizzly and her cub, between a Mom and her daughter or son. Bonds such as these are sacrosanct.

They are not meant to be broken.

I stood on my balcony on Mother’s Day, and found myself cheering for a sparrow.

* * *


Blogger Cheesy said...

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Thanks for the cavity... that was sweet!

Sun May 10, 04:01:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh I didn't know that walrus's hugged their young like that! thanks for the mother's day surprise!

Sun May 10, 06:18:00 PM  
Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

Lovely video and fabulous bird watching, Jonas! There's nothing like a mother's wrath when it comes to her young, no matter what the species (of those that stick around to raise and nurture the babies, that is).

Sun May 10, 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger Woman in a Window said...

Jonas, very cool. I like this above all else I've read this Mother's Day. Thanks.

Sun May 10, 08:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw the very same thing today, and pointed it out to the kids as we were driving! Actually, I don't know if it was a sparrow, but it was some small bird going after the hawk. Oddly, just yesterday I had been telling my son that you often see smaller birds tormenting hawks. I wonder if it is really for a particular offense or if the birds are just hardwired to chase away hawks?

Love that walrus video - very cute.

Sun May 10, 08:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Originally only saw the video but LOVE the following post. What a unique take for a Mother's Day post.
I am often frightened how territorial, protective, how filled with emotions I feel when I feel my boy isn't being treated well. I would and could kill if someone harmed him.
When my son was very young, we had this little lady of a Pomeranian. She was the biggest baby. Yet, nature kicked in when we brought our son home. She planted herself as a guard on the bed that jake and I would lie in. She would growl at anyone (even his dad) who would come near. One day I laid Jake down on a blanket on the carpet as his dad watched TV. I began hearing this devilish frigtening growling and ran panicked to the other room. Little princess Zooey who found a rainstorm too much for her mild constitution to take, was on Jake's blanket ... circling him growling and spitting at the poor (male) cat who was simply trying to enter the living room! She never relented. Just as that mama walrus in the video allowed another female to help with the pup, I knew that day that I could count on her to watch my son's back!

Mon May 11, 03:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vicious Mother Love. :-0 ~Mary

Mon May 11, 06:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So beautiful. I would have loved to have seen that. You painted such an amazing picture!

Mon May 11, 10:48:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

While I'd rather offer individual responses to individual comments, I'm kinda flummoxed and tongue-tied. Y'all are women...mothers. I'm neither equiped nor worthy to offer comment.

I must simply bow.

And tell you that I love you.

Except...hey, Citizen...Granted, I'm no ornithologist (and I haven't slept in a Holiday Inn Express lately), but this confrontation wasn't territorial. It was too high, too ferocious.

Then, again. I'm a man of mammalian persuasion. I can't fathom the minds of our beloved little flying dinosaurs. But...I got my story and I'm stickin' to it!

Mon May 11, 11:02:00 PM  

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