Healing starts small and spreads…

A relentless environmental journalist I highly respect posted a sorrowful account of what life doing his work is like.

As a man reaching his upper middle aged years, devoted to environmental and social justice for as long as I can remember (I hated Nixon – the sociopathic mass killer and 37th President of the USA – before I was ten), I’ve seen victories that matter – cleaner air, cleaner water, endangered species recovery (ironically all initiated during Nixon’s regime). And of course I’ve also seen the same irreversible losses we’ve all suffered, including our current failure to stop the causes of catastrophic climate change…

In any case, I sent this to him as an intended note of comfort and I am also sending it to you, for a slim thread to hang from in these days of justifiable environmental despair.

Here’s some small good news…

A red-tailed hawk, a big (1150grams) strong female, her tail just now turning red, was hit by a vehicle on US 101 between Eureka and Arcata. We picked her up from the side of the highway early Monday morning. She suffered no broken bones but her eyes were closed, she was barely responsive, her head tracked uselessly from right to left. Her conditon remained exactly like this for 36 hours. We administered anti-inflammatory pain medication and fluids. I checked on her frequently.

My dismay was mounting.

Finally, unwilling to prolong her suffering much further, I checked her again late afternoon Tuesday. Pulling the old, donated pillow case back from the clear acrylic door of the incubator where I’d housed her, there she was – facing me, her fierce stance returning, her eyes open, clear, prepared. She was ready to meet me, on whatever terms the blaze of reality dictates, regardless.

She’s not flying yet, but soon she will. And then she’ll be free.

41 other cases in care right now, raccoon kits, mule deer fawns, juvenile brown pelicans, striped skunks, a glaucous winged gull who ate a fish hook.

All of these animals have a good prognosis for release.

After that? Who knows? Against the 6th extinction? I have no answer. But against my one “wild and precious life,” everything.

take care,
monte merrick