Hawk Stone

A True Story of Mitakuye Oyasin

One afternoon, returning from an appointment, as I was driving west on Delmar Boulevard, close to Old Bonnehomme Road in Clayton, MO., a Red Tail hawk swooped down in front of the car ahead of me. This is not an uncommon occurrence in Missouri but for it to happen on a busy street at the beginning of rush hour was unusual. Unfortunately for the hawk, he was not careful enough to avoid the car and was struck.

The car that hit the hawk kept going as if nothing happened. As I got close enough, I stopped my car, out on the emergency lights and got out to see if there was anything I could do. Tragically, the injuries sustained by the hawk were massive, and he appeared to be dead.

Having work gloves in my car, along with small, plastic garbage bags, I set about picking the hawk up to transport him to the wild. As I slowly picked him up, one talon grabbed onto a flat stone and locked it in place. It was almost as though he was clinging to life but failed.

I tried to remove the stone, but it was as tough complete rigor mortis had rapidly set in, and I could not remove it. Taking this as a sign, I brought the body home and amputated both talons and a few feathers which I preserved. The remainder of the body, I took out to Creve Couer Park, near the Missouri River and returned it to the wild.

Since that day, I sense I have a connection to a power greater than myself.

I feel my eyes opened to the true meaning of Mitakuye Oyasin.

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