Hummingbirds as threads in the universe

“In the tapestry of life, we’re all connected. Each one of us is a gift to those around us helping each other be who we are, weaving a perfect picture together.” – Anita Moorjani

The striking colors in this vignette of life here at Pokeberry Pines was irresistible

The flutter of wings caught my attention, but the bright splash of colors is what drew me out to the garden to witness this tiger swallowtail sipping nectar from the zinnias. It happened just as clouds were rolling in and the sky was changing from brilliant blue to the many shades of gray as a summer storm approached.

Storm clouds cover summer’s blue sky

Five minutes later I was leaning over a plant taking a photo of a June beetle when I heard the familiar buzz of a hummingbird. It didn’t come and go as usual, though. I was hearing it in steady stereo – from both my right and my left. I froze but glanced right and saw a female or juvenile ruby-throated hummingbird about two feet from my face, hovering and staring at me. I glanced left, and there was a second hummingbird staring at me. Both were suspended in the air by the rapid beat of their wings, and I suspected they were wondering what I was and why I was standing between them. I didn’t move except to turn my head slowly toward the bird on the right.

A hummingbird visits the bee balm in our garden

She dipped about five inches toward me and then backed up to her previous hovering position. She dipped closer again and backed up. We looked at each other eye-to-eye for about five seconds, and I smiled at her. As I turned to greet the bird still hovering to my left, both of them flew off, landing on the garden fence a few feet away for a rest. I straightened up and took a deep breath, centering, settling into the moment, feeling surprised and a bit enchanted.

In moments like this, time stands still. There is only the here and now. No thinking. No planning. No worrying. No future or past. Just here. Just now. Just me and the hummingbird, experiencing something both profoundly ordinary and extraordinary at the same time – two beings intensely aware of each other.

In that moment I was woven into the universe like a thread into fabric – a part of the whole, connected. I felt the warp of bee balm and weft of the bumble bee, the tug of goldfinches on tickseeds, the fraying edges of the prayer flags flying overhead, the pull of the stars from above the sunlit sky. All of it wrapped around me like a blanket in winter, warming my heart and soul.

Fraying prayer flags over our garden

I stood there for a while under the hot morning sun, wondering what the hummingbird felt, if anything. But it didn’t matter. We were one, in that moment and forever, connected by the threads of the universe. Threads that also connect me to the people I love, the music I hear, the gardens that feed and nourish me, the friends I cherish, and the experience of being alive.

We are all connected, thread by thread, in this messy, magical, wondrous life, and I’m grateful for it.

What thread did you notice or tug at today? What was your hummingbird moment?


  1. Great quote and musings. Yesterday as I was checking a hummingbird feeder, a female hummingbird buzzed up from the other side, less than 10 inches from my face. She kept glancing down at my pants legs, visible beneath the feeder, but hardly paid any attention to my face. She fed for 30+ seconds, moving to a port a little closer and then buzzed off…quite a moment, face to face with such a charmer.

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