Tuesday, September 29, 2009


On Sunday, Red and I were walking downtown. I wasn’t paying much attention, but he stopped me and pointed to a spot on the concrete where the sidewalk and building met. There was a pigeon. She was just sitting, huddled close to the wall.

I crouched down to get a better look at her, and she didn’t move. Her eyes looked clear, but her plumage had seen better days. She didn’t look injured, so I figured that maybe she was sick or old and had settled down to die. Why else wouldn’t she hop away from a random human? I know that city pigeons are tame, but I could have probably touched this one. I wanted to, but I didn’t think she’d appreciate it very much. I talked softly to her for a few moments. Since there was nothing I could do, Red and I kept going.

On our way back a few minutes later, she was still there. This time, she acted like she was about to get up and walk, but thought better of it and settled down on the sidewalk again. I was afraid for her, out there on the pavement with no protection. I whispered to her again, then offered a blessing.

“Should we call someone?” I asked Red.

“Like who?”

“Ummm…a wildlife rehabilitator?” I guessed.

Red didn’t think they did pigeons, and we probably wouldn’t have much luck finding help on a Sunday night for a seemingly un-distressed bird. I admitted that he was probably right, and we couldn’t just scoop her up and take her home. What would we have done with her once we got there? And wouldn’t that stress her out even more?

I was so sad to leave her, afraid that someone cruel would come along and hurt her, or that a feral cat would chance upon this easy prey. My head tells me that most likely she was ready to die and simply settled down to wait. I know I can’t save them all, but that doesn’t make it easier.

Blessed be, little friend. Safe journey.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

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