The Comfort of a Hum

I’m awake at dawn, the clock strikes 5 as I watch

The fan above turn the sultry summer air around and

Around with the thoughts in my head – WHAT TO DO

Today. The list begins as I stretch and wonder why I do

What I do until I move past the window and pause.

summertime, from my window, hummingbird 






She’s there, sipping as daintily as a lady drinking tea from a

China cup, but instead, this green fluorescent fairy zips her wings

Faster than sight as she hovers over my red-bottomed feeder and

YES, she turns her head with her long-nosed pipe and she

Winks, I swear she winks with gratitude and joy and I realize

Oh, that’s why I do what I do.


Photo by Susan Licht.




83 thoughts on “The Comfort of a Hum

  1. Such a lovely post! I love “fluorescent fairy,” and I’m sure she did wink. Like Darlene, lots of birds here, but no hummingbirds. I have seen them here a few times, but not this year.
    I’m up early, too, thinking about the day. 🙂

  2. Good morning, good morning, to you and that enchanted fairy! (Oh, and the enchanted fan, too, less we too easily dismiss a man-made joy of fairy wings cooling our air.) I love your morning lesson. It’s the wee things in life that sometimes show us our way through and between and around the “to do” list.

  3. We have a pair of resident hummingbirds that appears in our yard during the season. They are amazing little creatures in so many different ways. But, your moniker of fluorescent fairy is absolutely perfect, Pam. Nature has a quiet manner of showing us the way – when we pause long enough to listen. Thanks for the reminder and inspiration on this beautiful Friday morning 🙂

    • Thank you, Dave. And I’m not unconvinced that the hummingbird is a fairy in disguise. She knows we’ll accept her as a bird, so she shows off her wings and winks in florescent feathers.

  4. Pamela – your take on things here is a wonderful way to start a hot, muggy summer morning. Just one glimpse of those beautiful creatures can carry one through the whole day.

    • So true, Bruce. On our SF Bay deck, we had half a dozen (larger) hummingbirds at a time. The ‘experts’ have explained that the NE variety are smaller and much more territorial, so only one takes center stage on that feeder – the others get chased away. Perhaps that’s what the wink was all about – “see me? I WIN!” 🙂

  5. Hummingbirds are scarce here — but one ‘fluorescent fairy’ zipped ‘faster than sight’ through the flowers just the other day. What a lovely gift to see her.

    And I am glad you do what you do! ❤

  6. I love fans and keep them going in my house all the time. I can’t sleep without a fan humming. And I love the humming birds that gather on my deck where I garden now. I try to have flowers they like. Lovely post.

  7. Delightful! And yes appreciating and caring for the sheer beauty of creation and its fascinating tiny minions and fairies is of infinite value. And I too am happy that I’ve learned to appreciate what I can still do at 79.

    • Back in my 20s,s the idea of getting up before 9 was ….truly awful. Now, I can’t imagine rising after 6. All that I’d miss from the busy-ness of nature outside my window…!

      • We don’t have hummingbirds here. I’m so envious. I remember being captivated by the photograph of a hummingbird in a bird book when I was a child and have remained so since. When my daughter visited the states a few years ago, she brought me back a glass painting of a hummingbird. She’d seen a few over there. I don’t think I’d ever mentioned my fascination to her, so it is an especially treasured gift.

    • I wish I had a place to hang a hummer feeder outside my kitchen window. Although I’m afraid my pasta would get overcooked and my cookies burned in the oven as I joyfully watched their antics!

  8. Beautiful Pam. Stunning images, and the message comes through so gently and sweetly in the simplicity of your words. Ahhh, the little things…makes me think of the song from Les Mis too, which I was singing yesterday…’They laugh at me these fellows just because I am small…’
    ‘I may be small,’ said the hummingbird, ‘but my heart can beat over 1000 times a minute!’ What INCREDIBLE little beings! Love and hummmms, Harula xxx

    • Perhaps that’s the magical, mystical part of the hummingbird – her heart. So tiny, yet so full of LIFE and beats per minute. Wonder what song she hums too, as her heart thrums to her own little fast drummer?

  9. This was beautiful Pam. I don’t get to see much of hummingbirds living in a condo now. But last winter we spent the winter in beautiful Arizona and I’d see the same two hummingbirds visit a flowering bush near our balcony every morning. I think they’re magical. 🙂

  10. It’s so quiet right now that I can hear the ticking of a clock and my sweet dog’s rhythmic, soft breathing, so I can appreciate the hum(s) of which you speak. Those sounds–often obscured by the invasive sounds of everyday life–are what make me pause and smile. Even if I only notice the barely audible sound of something once a day, that reminder to be aware triggers such gratitude. And that’s what you said in this post. Thank you!

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