Red-tailed hawks.  I love these magnificent birds.  It’s a thrill to see them when I least expect it.   They have gorgeous brown backs and broad ecru breasts with dark splotches, and when they fly, their coppery red tails glimmer in the sun.

Hawks are patient.  They can be quite still, silently waiting for the universe to bring them what they want, prey scurrying by.  But when they see what they want, there is no hesitation.  They swoop in to claim it.   Hawks can’t wait if they are going to survive.

Native Americans believe hawks are messengers.  They must have something to tell me because I’ve spotted a lot of them lately, perched on trees along the highways.

I think they are whispering one word to me.  Wait.

Sometimes we have to wait patiently for what we want.  But when we see it, do we swoop in and claim it?  How many times have we let someone or something pass us by because we told ourselves it wasn’t the perfect moment?

Instead of moving, we say “when.”   When the mortgage is paid, the kids are grown, we retire, we have more time, or we’ve saved more money.  Only then, we tell ourselves will we take the dream trip, start a business, take dancing lessons, or pursue whatever is our dream.

“When” becomes “maybe.”  And sadly, sometimes, “maybe” becomes “never.”

In the last few weeks, I’ve lost count of the number of hawks I’ve seen.

They couldn’t wait to tell me.

“You’ve waited long enough,” the hawks say.

“Don’t wait any longer,” they implore.  “Look.  It’s right here in front of you.  Swoop in and claim it.”

So why have the hawks come to me now with this message?  It’s what I need to hear.  Right now.

© Lynn Wyvill 2012


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