Bob and the Hummingbird
Robert Rucker, a member of the Milam Family of Cherokees, enjoys feeding
the wildlife in his back yard. Numerous species visit the large feeders he
keeps filled for both birds and squirrels. Bob told this story of his
encounter with a tiny hummingbird.
One day Bob stepped onto
his covered porch and noticed a hummingbird caught in a thick cobweb near
the roof. Very carefully he pulled the little creature free and held it in
his hand. He saw that the bird was weak and had probably been caught in
the web all night. He held it close to the hummingbird feeder while it
drank its fill.
Bob could see that the bird
was still struggling with sticky webs caught in its wings. He brushed the
strands away, opening his palm out flat so that the bird could fly. Bob
watched as the hummingbird rose slightly, hovering just above his palm.
Its wings were beating so quickly they were invisible. Then it landed back
on his hand. It tested its wings in this manner a couple more times.
Then a wonderful thing
happened. The hummingbird used its long beak to pull out a feather from
beneath its wing. This the bird laid in Bob’s hand. According to Cherokee
traditionalist Pat Moss, that is how you get a hummingbird feather…it has
to be given to you.