Friday, December 23, 2011

The Omen of the Night Owls

Owls are important symbolically in many cultures. In ancient Greece and Rome, they were linked to Athena and considered symbols of knowledge and wisdom.  In Arthurian legend,  Merlin is often depicted with an owl on his shoulder and again, the owl is linked to wisdom.  In Japan,  owl statues are said to ward off plague and illness.  In some Native American cultures owls are linked to knowledge and magic.  I knew all these things when I chose owls as the decorative theme for my new baby's nursery.   I didn't know the darker side of owls.  In many cultures, especially the Apache culture, owls portend death and are associated with the dead.  The Apaches are not alone.  Many other cultures see owls as linked death.    Of course, I choose to ignore all the cultures that see owls as ill omens in the same way I have ignored the ill omens associated with black dogs and cats.  Some of my favorite pets have been black dogs and cats and they've only brought good luck to me.

Therefore, as I sat in my owl themed nursery late at night just before my son was born,   I saw owls only as good omens.  They have become a symbol of my baby boy.   They are wise and beautiful creatures of the night. 

My neighborhood and my house have no trees.   So birds of any sort are a rare commodity in my neighborhood.  The lake brings geese and goose poop, but owls are never seen in my neck of the woods.   However,  the night before my baby was born,   as I sat in the nursery, unable to sleep and very pregnant, the call of three owls filled the night air.  I sat up and listened to them hoot back and forth to each other with their distinct calls for over an hour before I drifted off to sleep.  The next day I held my baby in my arms, making owls forever a good omen for me.  I'm not sure if there was any real significance to the presence of the owls, but to me there was something mystical to their presence that night.  They were omens of life to come.

3 comments:

Little Gothic Horrors said...

That's going to be a lovely story to tell Lucien when he is older. I'm with you, I prefer to focus on the positive mythology associated with animals rather than the negative.

Happy Holidays!

Jeffery said...

Nice!...And serendipitous!

Have a Scary Creepmas and Best Hisses for the New Year...Hehehehe..Chaotically yours!
Cheers!

Courtney Mroch said...

Wow. What a great story. When we lived in Jacksonville, FL our house was surrounded by huge trees. At night, in the ones behind our bedroom, the owls would do their night talking. The first time I heard it I thought we were being invaded by a band of wild monkeys. Then I got used to it. Then I started seeing them. Now I miss them. Every once in a while I'll hear an owl if I walk Murph down the way, and if I'm really lucky I'll spot them swooping. I love this story about Lucien's room and the night before his arrival. Very cool. (Also, congrats again on your 3rd beautiful baby boy!)