Monday, July 12, 2010

Looking for Hummingbirds

My bible reading yesterday took me by surprise:

"Dogs have surrounded me..."
Psalm 22:16

When a puppy enters a home, all mathematical axioms are null and void. You do not add one dog as many people would think. When a puppy enters the home, you enter a 4th dimension and dogs are everywhere you look. They are in the cabinets, under the rug, behind the couch on the eternal quest to kill themselves by ingesting objects larger than their esophagus or attached to 110 volts. Three dogs do not seem much more than two to the novice.... but trust me. There is an exponential leap- you go from two to 1 million dogs, at least when you are as unskilled and unpracticed in puppies as I am.

So yesterday, needing a few moments of not watching for sparks flying out of little black nostrils, I took the three dogs to sit out front and ponder the universe where the whole world is a puppy's toilet. The dogs all settled in the sun and lay down and it was blissfully quiet, albeit blistering hot. I noticed my Rose of Sharon was in bloom. This is very exciting because hummingbirds will sometimes magically materialize out of nowhere to suck the fragrant blossoms. I sat peacefully and still, knowing the hummingbirds would not come if I was moving. Meanwhile, Lucky was racing up and down the front yard barking at a passerby. Honeybun and Zach were rolling and growling and cavorting right in front of the Rose of Sharon. No matter how still I sat, the hummingbird was not going to search for nectar in the presence of those carnivores. So instead, I watched the dogs.

I felt a momentary stab of self-pity. In the hot July scorching sun, my Rose of Sharon doesn't bloom long and even when it does, the elusive hummingbird is a rare treat. As I was wallowing in self absorption, I saw the puppy leap straight up in the air and land on Honeybun's swishing tail. He attacked it with gusto and Honeybun flopped over and grabbed him with her paws. Lucky whined nearby, remembering how Honeybun used to try to rip his insides out when we first got her. He wasn't at all sure the puppy was safe in her paws, but I think Honeybun remembered the pups that had obviously been snatched from her not long before we found her half dead on the roadside. I think Zach eased a sadness in our Honeybun and I felt certain she would not hurt him. He bit her ear and she head butted him to the ground.

Laughing at their antics, I forgot about the hummingbird. Hummingbirds are a rare treat, a captivating and sought after delicacy of joy. But here before me in my very presence was a gift of present delight, and I didn't want to miss the commonplace beauty searching for the rare.

Ecclesiastes 9:7
Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for it is now that God favors what you do.


  1. Yes, instead of stopping to sniff the rose of sharon, you need to stop and sniff the puppy!

  2. haha! That was a great comment Carol!