Thursday, December 28, 2006

Poetry Thursday -- Hummer Wars

The cold morning brought a steady stream
of delicate, beautiful hummers to my feeder
I stand, hands in hot soapy water, transported
from the mundane into their flittery world.

One at a time, they come perch sip
at the nectar I provide
One at a time because they are protective solitary warriors

A newcomer arrives
lured by the cold to seek sustenance
He hovers cautiously, looking about
He lands and sips
His little body almost shudders in delight

And then a whir of wings and blur of movement
and the chase is on
Flying, whirling, sprinting off
like arrows from a bow
They rocket away and whirl back again

The newcomer is gone, chased away
by the male who defends his feeder
with his tiny sword beak

And, I wonder if the newcomer got enough
precious fluid to fuel his escape or if he must start over,
worse off than he was.


For Poetry Thursday. My first submission to this cause.


Dennis said...

This is delightful! And so accurate. I stayed in a bed & breakfast in Sedona last February and every morning we were treated to the very scene you described so colorfully. It’s amazing that so little food can supply enough energy to do what they do. And it’s sad too because there was more than enough for all of them to eat in the feeder, yet they are so highly territorial (their colors are dazzling!)

Mary said...

I miss watching the hummers and look forward to their return. Your poem is so perfect...the way you described watching the "whir or wings" and how it takes you away from the task at hand!

LauraHinNJ said...

Beautiful poem, Liza.

I guess you have hummers all year? Lucky you!

Liza Lee Miller said...

We do get hummers here year round -- in fact, we get more in the winter because our resident Anna's Hummingbirds stay around and Rufous and Allen's hummers migrate in. I love watching them. I put a feeder up outside my husband's office too. He likes them better than the Chickadees because they don't leave a mess (sunflower seed shells).

Glad you like the poem. I love that I got inspired while doing the dishes! :)

Crafty Green Poet said...

So wonderful to see hummers all year. A wonderfully observant poem.

Rethabile said...

A hummer's a hummingbird. Okay. I got that part. But what a lovely poem!

Have a happy 2007... with more delightful art.

Liza Lee Miller said...

Thank you all for your kind words! I have avoided writing poetry for so long and it was always such a solitary experience for me that writing it and sharing it with strangers and having people say they like it is quite a heady experience! So, thank you all so much!

Jon said...

I love the idea of being transported while doing mundane tasks like washing the dishes. And I like how you've not idealized the scene: the narrator is entranced by the hummingbirds' beauty and delicacy but is also appreciably affected by how viciously territorial they are. Very nice.

Happy New Year!