Elegant Spirits

Little Hawk sat alone on the grassy knoll. That was not his real name, but that was what everyone called him. Every day he came to the same knoll and sat silently, looking toward the sky. Every day – almost – a red tail hawk flew above him.

Sometimes it was already there when Little Hawk arrived. Sometimes it appeared after he came, at first just a speck in the clear sky. Sometimes other hawks came, and, in the winter, eagles came, too. Little Hawk watched them all.

This day the grass on the knoll was yellow, leaves were dropping, and an August breeze caressed him. Above Little Hawk, three red tail hawks circled, riding the currents of air that rose from the knoll. They were lower than usual, and it seemed to Little Hawk that he could see every feather on the elegant birds. The air currents were visible to Little Hawk, but the birds rode them as skilfully as deer leaping over the fallen tree, or fish swimming up a river.

How do they do that? he wondered.

As one of the hawks – the one that came almost every day – hovered above him, Little Hawk saw its tail feathers move ever so slightly. First one on the left, then one in the middle, then one on the left again, shifted position. The more Little Hawk watched, the more he could see how these movements kept the hawk just where it wanted to be as the air moved around it.

 “The hawk is dancing with the wind!” he exclaimed.

At that moment, the hawk moves its wings slightly. It did not flap them. It just moved them a little bit. At once it began to circle upward. Little Hawk watched as it grew smaller and smaller. When it was very high in the sky, two more hawks joined it, and they flew away together.


Little Hawk thought about what he had seen for a long time. He thought about it all fall and winter. He was still thinking about it in the spring. Something very big was happening inside him. Little Hawk was learning something about his own life from the hawk – how to ride the wind.

Hawks are masters at flying. They can glide. They can climb and dive. They can land in trees. They are masters of their wing feathers and their tail feathers, but they are not masters of the wind.

The wind goes where it wants. Sometimes the wind blows from the north and sometimes from the south. Sometimes it comes from the east and sometimes from the west. Sometimes it flies straight up, and sometimes it roars straight down. It can disappear and reappear from nowhere.

No matter how it blows, hawks love to fly. They move with the wind, but not like leaves in the autumn breeze.

 Leaves in the wind go where the wind goes, and sometimes that happens to hawks, too. Sometimes it does not. The journey of a leaf depends only on the wind. Hawks have wills of their own.

The journey of a hawk depends on both the hawk and the wind. Sometimes the wind takes the hawk where it wants to go, and sometimes it doesn’t. When it doesn’t, the hawk doesn’t mind. Either way, hawks are master at flying, always in control of their wing feathers and tail feathers.

 Elegant Spirits do this, too.

 Their wing feathers and tail feathers are what they think, say, and do. They always think, say, and do things to create harmony, cooperation, sharing, and reverence for Life.  No matter what comes up, that is what they do. They are in control of what they think, say and do, even though they are not in control of what comes up in their lives. Sometimes unpleasant things come up. Other times happy things come up. Either way, they ride the wind. They do the best they can, and then they let the wind take them where they need to go.

The wind is your life. It is all the things that happen between the time that you are born and the time that you go home. Elegant Spirits don’t know what will come up next; the same way that hawk’s don’t know which way the wind will blow next. This doesn’t bother them because they don’t try and control their lives any more than hawks try to control the wind.

The hawk that hovered above Little Hawk did not try to control the wind. It controlled only itself. Elegant Spirits control only themselves, too. They do not try to control others. They don’t have hidden agendas. They don’t think, say, or do things to manipulate other people. They do their best, but they aren’t attached to what happens after that. Like the hawks, they do the best that they can, and then they ride the wind.

The hawk that hovered above Little Hawk never stopped using its wing feathers and its tail feathers. Elegant Spirits never stop using their intentions.  Their intentions are to create harmony, cooperation, sharing, and reverence for Life. They set them, do their best, and then say, “Thy will be done”. That is how they ride the wind. They do not fight their lives. They use them to soar.

 What Little Hawk learned from the hawk changed his life. From that time on, he began to soar, too.

Have you soared in your life yet? If not, you may be surprised. When you do, you will discover that the wind – your life – is not taking you just anywhere.

Author unknown 

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