The Hawk Stands with No Fear

I looked out of my kitchen window this morning and saw a hawk standing on my porch railing, staring intently at something in the grass. What a wonderful surprise!  I was afraid that I would scare it away if I dared to step outside, so I decided to take a photo through the back door window.
Hawk_Searching
The hawk had its back turned towards me, so I thought it did not notice that I was standing there. But even though I had approached as quietly as I could, my presence was already known. As I was about to take another photo, the hawk turned its head all the way around (without moving its body) and looked straight through my eyes and into my soul.Hawk-Wisdom
The hawk’s eyes were intense, but somehow beautifully soft and gentle. We stood there looking at each other for a few minutes, neither one of us moving. Not a sound was made, but again and again, I heard the same thought traveling through the air.
No fear !
Assess the situation,
know who you are and
do what you are meant to do.
No fear!
After a while, it looked down and away from me, as if trying to remember something…..
Hawk-Thinking
I guess nothing else came to mind, because a few seconds later, it looked up towards the sky and opened its mouth wide as if it was yawning. The hawk then turned its head to the left and gazed off into the distance, giving me the time and opportunity to take a profile shot.
Hawk-Profile
Shortly after I took this last photo, without warning, it spread its wings and flew away, up into the nearby oak trees. When  I opened the back door and walked out onto the porch, I could hear the hawk’s voice calling from above.

About Mary Strong-Spaid

You can find me any time wandering around in my own mind gathering thoughts.
This entry was posted in birds, Nature, Photo Essay, photography, wildlife and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

111 Responses to The Hawk Stands with No Fear

  1. Fotostream says:

    Hi, Mary! It’s a very lucky event. I think the second photo is the best shot. But if there is no explanation, the bird’s figure might look unnatural. Those photos are very sharp. Congratulations !!!

    Like

    • Thanks! I didn’t know that hawks could turn their heads around like that, without moving their bodies. Good thing I was not an animal who was being hunted for a snack. There I was, thinking I could not be seen behind the hawk’s back. Not so!

      Like

  2. che'hanin says:

    Lovely shots, extra like to the 2nd photo.

    Like

  3. wisejourney says:

    Wonderful

    Like

  4. LucyLiving says:

    Amazing! What a beautiful experience for you – thanks for sharing 🙂

    Like

  5. no fear! handsome fellow; wonderful story Mary with great photos

    Like

    • Thanks Eddie! I agree…very handsome and quite healthy. I have seen a lot of hawks lately, mostly from a distance. Last week, when I was driving down the road, a red-tailed hawk suddenly rose up out of the grass and flew right in front of my car. I thought we were going to collide, but the hawk apparently knew what it was doing. As it came in front of my windshield, it briefly looked me in the eyes, and then leaned backwards and did something like a swimmer’s backstroke with its wings. With one powerful stroke, it pulled itself right out of the way. So talented, the hawk!

      Like

  6. Your photos are great, but your description of the intense stare of a hawk is even better!

    Like

  7. Jackie says:

    Wonderful captures and story! How fantastic to have an encounter like this!

    Like

  8. Woolly Muses says:

    Mary you have captured some great shots of a magnificent bird.

    Like

  9. Alison says:

    Thank you for sharing this. What a wonderful moment for you, really special, and now for us. Also great photographs. No fear. Beautiful.

    Like

  10. artscottnet says:

    What an amazing event, Mary, and beautiful pictures! Those brilliant knowing attentive eyes and the blended feathers, a beautiful bird

    Like

    • Wisdom in the eyes for sure!
      Design of the feathers and the shades of brown and grey are beautiful.

      Like

      • artscottnet says:

        hey, it’s me, that pesky fellow blogger, wondering how you’re doing, hoping you’re well… no posts from you for a while…

        Like

        • Thanks for asking! For whatever reason, recently…I haven’t been able to rise above time. It comes and then I don’t know where it goes. Doing everything and somehow accomplishing nothing. Something like that, I think.

          Like

        • artscottnet says:

          Smiles…. I know all about those time monsters… be well and a good week to you and yours… I will wait patiently for your next post, whenever you are ready. Cheers, Happy 4th, a good week and all that stuff 🙂 ~Scott

          Like

  11. Beautiful Captures – thanks so much for sharing the beauty of a bird of prey:) Happy Week!

    Like

  12. Wow you were so lucky to see that and the photos are amazing. We very occasionally get sparrowhawks around here but they are too fast to photograph. They pluck little birds from the bushes and demolish them on the roof.

    Like

    • Undoubtedly it is extremely difficult to evade or hide from a hawk…..especially since the hawk can turn its head almost all the way around so easily.
      It’s just like having eyes in the back of your head!

      Like

  13. He’s absolutely beautiful Mary, and what great pics! 🙂

    Like

  14. dorannrule says:

    OMG these are astounding shots Mary! And your personal connection with the hawk was awesome. Those eyes……..

    Like

  15. dorannrule says:

    Reblogged this on Virginia Views and commented:
    An awesome connection with a truly wild creature!

    Like

  16. Jerry says:

    Absolutely beautiful bird Mary, and a beautiful photo to show it.

    Like

    • Thanks Jerry! It was a lucky day…

      Like

      • Jerry says:

        I, myself , don’t believe too much in luck but I do believe our minds create that which want when the desire is strong enough. Been wanting a shot of that bird for a while haven’t you? 😉 Love you new photo of you. 🙂

        Like

        • Well…yes. I hear the hawks in the trees and see them swooping down to catch things from time to time. They are usually either flying too high or too fast for me to get a good look at them. Not this time!
          There was a red-tailed hawk that flew in front of my car a week or so ago. I thought it was going to hit into the windshield, but at the last minute it did something similar to a swimmers backstroke (with both wings simultaneously). The hawk looked me in the eyes as it pulled out of harms way with one big “swoop.” Impressive.

          Like

          • Jerry says:

            I’ve had animals that appeared to stop as to say, “Sure, go ahead and shoot”. You can’t sneak up on much with a 55mm lens but will have a 300mm next week so hopefully that will help me get the shots from a distance. Trying to get close enough to birds such as the Heron or the exotic game is tough. 🙂

            Like

  17. I read your blog on Dorannrule’s reblog. So glad to have come across you, one way or the other. What is it that gives the hawk the look of total power and strength: the very eyes that stared you down?

    Like

    • The power and strength of the hawk is in the one-pointedness of its eyes. The hawk did not stare me “down”…it stared straight into me. When the hawk did that, it gave me the equal opportunity to see into its soul. I saw no confusion or doubt or fear. The hawk is successful in this life because it knows how to focus completely on whatever it is doing at any given moment, without being swayed by passing distractions. When it stared at me, there was no other.
      I just searched for “one-pointedness” to make sure I was using the right word to explain. I found an article that coincides with what I am trying to say:
      http://www.sssbpt.info/vahinis/Dhyana/Dhyana13.pdf.

      Like

  18. Wow! Great shots but more than that– what a blessing!! A sign of something for sure. Going to look up that link. Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog!

    Like

  19. haykooh says:

    what a real treat! just imagine –not just one but four beautiful shots!! i love the third one most..

    Like

  20. johnsilva262 says:

    Wonderful Story, Excellent photos. Had a similar experience with a Cooper’s Hawk which landed in my backyard to have a meal. http://www.johnsilva.ca/news/view/nov_21/index.htm.

    Thanks for dropping by my WordPress Blog

    Like

  21. Great shots … through a window … excellent; I think your windows are much cleaner than mine!! LOL

    Like

  22. katelon says:

    How wonderful that you had that opportunity to share with the hawk and photograph it! I have a red tailed hawk on my business card and love them. Throughout my travels this last 7+ months I have seen many flying above me but not gotten the chance to see them up close. What a gift!

    Like

    • They do tend to fly high…..except when they decide to swoop down and grab something. It is a surprise that the hawk chose to stand on the deck railing. And I am equally surprised that it decided to stay, even after it saw me.
      When the hawk looked up at the sky and kind of yawned….I thought—my cats do similar things to show that they are comfortable and trusting of their surroundings. Wasn’t in the least bit threatened by me or my camera.

      Like

  23. Filipa says:

    Beautifuuuuul! You’re so lucky 🙂 Love, Filipa*

    Like

  24. cindy knoke says:

    Gorgeous shots. Beautiful raptor. Red Shouldered Hawk??

    Like

  25. montucky says:

    Wow, what an encounter!

    Like

  26. Steve Rebus says:

    Wow, i love this post! Amazing photos of such a wonderful encounter! 🙂

    Like

  27. blmaluso says:

    So beautiful! How amazing to have such a close, personal encounter. Thanks for sharing!

    Like

  28. Ray's Mom says:

    Fortunate opportunity, and perhaps saved the life of a bird or squirrel. Loved the photos.

    Like

  29. vkalinkaneo says:

    Vos articles présentent des photographies exceptionnelles!
    Dans mon jardin, il n’y a que tourterelles et geais, dans le vôtre… un aigle!
    Votre domaine est un véritable Eden!
    Et votre art photographique accompli.
    Recevez tous mes compliments!

    Like

  30. alvason says:

    What a lovely encounter, and beautifully captured in words and pictures. And how wonderful to have a hawk come to you like that and share things. Congratulations!

    Like

    • And I thought something like this would never happen again! I was wrong.
      Over a week has gone by since I photographed the hawk on my back porch.
      And then….this morning, surprise….the same hawk returned!
      This time it was standing on the railing looking right at our back door window, instead of out into the yard. Rather strange.
      My husband Tom said, “Look! It’s that hawk again!”
      So…Tom, the hawk, and I just stood there looking at each other for a few minutes—and then it flew away. How interesting. Why did it come back specifically to look into the window at us? A curious hawk?!!

      Like

  31. Fantastic shots, Mary. What a magnificent bird!!

    Like

  32. lidipiri says:

    Beautiful photos. Seems that the hawk was as fascinated by you as you of him! Thank you.

    Like

  33. abbeygarant says:

    Amazing! What lens / cam did you use?

    Like

  34. That’s amazing that you got such good shots of the hawk. And the fact that he turned and looked at you and took his sweet time about leaving!!! What attitude!

    Like

  35. lylekrahn says:

    That sounds like a great experience well described! They seem to know so much.

    Like

  36. you are one lucky woman – what a beautiful and enigmatic experience! great shots and I can see there is a bond…it’s in his eyes. I think he will be back. Thank you so much for sharing. Photos and words are strong and go so well together.

    Like

  37. djmrakiey says:

    Awesome shots ! the hawk is a very majestic bird…

    Like

  38. laurie27wsmith says:

    Thanks for dropping by at my blog. I love the hawk pictures, they are beautiful and great dialogue to go with it.
    Cheers
    Laurie.

    Like

  39. What a wonderful and memorable moment!

    Like

  40. robert87004 says:

    Lovely, that is a hawk for you, being the predator that it is, and unafraid of anything.

    Like

  41. Mags Corner says:

    Hi, Mary! First I want to thank you for following my What’s going on at Mumsy’s blog. I also have a picture blog but I am not a photographer just love taking pictures. Then I want to tell you that these pictures are breathtakingly beautiful. I love hawks they circle my place all the time and above the mountain where I live at the foot of but I have never been able to get a picture. You are so right that they can look right into your soul. These birds are very special to me and I wish WP had a ‘love’ button because the ‘like’ button was not enough for me on these fabulous pictures. Have a great day and it is nice to meet you. Hugs, Maggie

    Like

    • We are very much the same, I think. I have a great love for taking pictures too….I am not a professional photographer. The hawk is an awesome bird and I am glad that I had the opportunity to see it up-close like that!

      Like

  42. fgassette says:

    WOW! BEAUTIFUL PHOTOS!

    Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you took to stop by. May your day be filled with joy and peace.
    BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

    Like

  43. Mokasiya says:

    Mary, Such a gift, when the mystery appears, and enters the soul.
    Thanks for sharing and checking out my blog.

    Like

    • There are many mysterious things in this world, that’s for sure.
      Tonight, there are a gazillion crickets singing outside. The combination of all the individual voices sounds like on large breathe moving in and out.
      And up and beyond, there is rolling thunder in the distance–announcing the voice of the one who lives in the air!

      Like

  44. kellygetthin says:

    Wow..wonderful stories and pics. I am an artist with no inspiration lately. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Like

  45. What a lovely auspicious visit!

    Like

  46. I so enjoyed finding this post because today on a hike I found what I thought was either a hawk or owl feather. Looking at your wonderful photos, I think it was a hawk.
    Thanks for commenting on my blog. I look forward to reading more of your beautiful words and seeing your photos.

    Like

  47. Michael Lane says:

    Just found this blog. I love it and I love your writing. Than you for sharing it 🙂

    Like

  48. No fear – you’ve nailed the sentiment I experienced when stared down by a hawk. They are really something.

    Like

  49. Melanie says:

    Today I had almost the same senero happen. I came home around noon from work and for some strange reason I went right to my kitchen window Pulled the curtain open and on my back porch in the city was a beautiful hawk. It just kept looking into my eyes. I called for my husband who was in the basement. He told me it was a hawk. So beautiful. It was so close to my window. It freaked me out but very excited. Wish I could have got a photo. Maybe it will be back

    Like

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