protecting the dove from the crow

This morning I was taking advantage of the cool(er) about 95-degree summer morning air by doing a bit of gardening in the front yard when a young, tattered baby dove landed at my feet. The bird did not seem injured, but I immediately got the impression that it needed assistance. My elderly, sweet, wonderfully originally-from-Brooklyn neighbor shouted from across the street, "good morning, Kristen! Can you believe that dove? It really likes you. Maybe it's looking for protection from that black crow. We had four mangled doves in our yard last week!"

Tell it like it is, Celeste.

Sure enough, a large black crow was looming nearby. It approached, and the dove got even closer, just an inch from my foot. I squatted down, and the dove walked just out of my reach, moving no faster than what was required to maintain independence. When I stood up, it once again sought protection just next to me. We went through this cycle a couple of times as the crow paced nearby.

"You should run after that crow and shoo it away," cackled Celeste. "It slaughtered doves in my yard last week! They're NASTY!"

Yes...I remember, Celeste.

She and her husband drove off, but not before she rolled down her window and made one last announcement "really, that dove seems to want to be with you!"

And it did.

So the dove and I did the do-se-do for a while. I couldn't chase the crow away because I was the shelter for the dove and couldn't make any sudden movements. Eventually, the crow gave up and flew off, and then my friend left me. Had it let me touch it, who knows what would have happened. I feel bonded to the poor thing, nevertheless.

I hope to see it again under better circumstances.