Tuesday, January 6, 2009

crows in the snow

photo from Bucks County Frames

I've decided that the crow is my animal totem for this new year. I've suddenly, quite out of the blue, begun to pay attention to the crows ... and they are everywhere. A bird as common as seagulls in this tiny seaside village and a bird that's been easy for me to take for granted. I think crow has been trying to speak to me for some time. Every summer crows build a nest at the very top of the large pine tree in our front garden. Just recently, after a wind storm and on a day in between winter's snow coverings I noticed their nest on the ground - beautiful and large, mostly made of mud and earth with bits of twigs and pieces of small branches - all carefully gathered by the crows and tucked into the mud giving the nest's structure strength. Now I remember watching them building their nest from my studio window or sometimes from my chair in the back garden - hopping along tree branches, selecting the most perfect twig for their nest and then breaking it off. Their fledgling, a beautiful fat black baby bird, died before he learned to fly - a cat the likely culprit. I found it's body near my front porch and I buried it in leaves atop Emma Jane's grave in our back small forest. I felt so sad for the parents who were frantic for days. Last summer, in the throws of Grief & Sadness I was forever coming across black feathers on my many walks out and about with Miss D. I collected them all convincing myself that each feather was a greeting from much missed big red dog. Lately, especially on our early morning walks, I've really been paying close attention to the crows. Such a handsome bird with their beautiful iridescent blue black feathers and coal black beaks, and so smart and cagey. I notice them using a stick or a rock as tools with their beaks. They're extremely social birds and if you take the time to listen to them their vocabulary is amazingly vast & diverse from gentle little cooing sounds and soft throat rumblings to the loud ruckus warning caws they're especially known for. I'm also on the look out for the raven, less common and basically a large crow, the shape of their tail feathers along with their size - the discerning factors in telling one from the other.

Crows are the keepers of the Sacred Law and to have a Crow totem is very powerful.
Personal Integrity are your watchwords and your guide in Life. If you have a Crow totem, your prime path is to be mindful of your opinions and actions. You must be willing to walk your talk, to speak your truth and to know your life's mission.

Crow is an omen of Change.

Crow lives in the void and has no sense of time, therefore, it sees past, present and future simultaneously. Crow merges both light and dark, both inner and outer. It is the totem of the Great Spirit and must be respected as such. They are symbols of creation and spiritual strength. Look for opportunities to create and manifest the magic of life. Crows are messengers calling to us about the creation and magic that is alive in the world today and available to us.

8am - back from our walk around this little village in cold and wind and darkness. No crows, too early I think - they're sleeping in this morning. A 20 min. pilates flexibility workout on DVD, a delicious tropical smoothie of yogurt, fresh pineapple, banana, orange juice and coconut extract. Not a bad start to this new day. I noticed les Chats (Bleet, Oliver & Gus) were all settling in on my bed for their long mornings' nap and I thought to open the curtains so that the sun would shine in on them - and there on my windowsill was a ladybug.


  1. Good morning, sweet Susan. I hope this note finds you doing well. I caught up on your last couple of posts. Kudos to you for your "feature". I went and visisted the site and left a comment for other readers. I wanted them to know how great your work is. :)

    My spirits are feeling a little more lively the last day or so. Thank you for the little note you left me. It does help to not think about things TOO much. ;)

    Much love to you and the furry babies!! :) xo

  2. Uh-oh. I'm thinking Hitchcock. The Birds! ;^)

    Seriously, though, very interesting post.

  3. I've been in love with crow for a long time, and would love to adopt a young one as a pet. I'm thrilled with the resurgence of their numbers around my home. Thanks so much for the info about crow as a totem. All those things described are important to me.

  4. I hope you looked up the ladybug....that sounds portent!

    The crow seems a perfect totem for your coming year and for you. I would never have thought my animal totem this year would be a deer since they are so common, but I guess it is. We don't really choose, do we? may seem that you chose, but there was a reason the crows all of a sudden attracted your strong interest, don't you think?

  5. Oh my goodness Anya a ladybug totem is totally perfect !

    Deer may have just been a message for that particular day or moment as porcupine was for both me and Miss D one day recently. I decided myself to pay special attention to crow because when I think back over the past 6 months crow just keeps showing up in my life "and" in so many different ways.

    There is a wonderful set of Animal Medicine Cards with a book that someone mentioned to you on your blog Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals (available at amazon). You can use these cards like Tarot cards and through them you could establish, better I think, what animal might be your totem for this year ...
    it might not be deer.

  6. Hi Susan

    I see many crows up to their busy activities year round on the river road. Now when I watch them, I'll think of you.

    Isn't a group of crows called a "murder"? I might be wrong.

    This is a link to a video on YouTube, from a tv show called Animal Miracles, about the friendship between a crow and a kitten. Absolutely amazing!
    Unusual Friends

  7. Crows, seaguls and pigeons are my beloved feathered creatures of the wild.

    Wonderful post sweet lady.

  8. Really liked the photo--study in contrast, lights and darks. Crows are our neighbors too. They keep us company all year. Although their early morning wakeup is not always appreciated. The warble they sing in the late summer is so unlike their excited calls. Sorry about their nest. They will have a big job next spring.

  9. i rarely see crows here where i live in ohio but they were a constant presence around my childhood indiana home (smack dab in the middle of cornfields and woods). i think the crow may very well suit you.

    your smoothie sounds just delicious!!

  10. I just had to come back to tell you how much fun it was to see you and dear Jake in your new profile pic!! It's so lovely! :)

  11. Your writing is so delicious...and when accompanied by your magical art work, well, each visit here is like a vacation for the soul.

    I love crows...always have. I love the way they chatter with one another and the way theu call to me when I am outside. They are very cool birds...very.

    I am so glad WD is feeling better. It is always so frightening when they are ill.

    Happy new year to you and to all those sweet fir babies with whom you share your life.


  12. I admit I can't stand them. There are many around here and they can be a nuisance. I didn't know about all of the symbolism in a crow. I know there is a lot of symbolism for an eagle of which I'm a big fan. That is the bird I always feel I must pay attention to. They 'speak' to me.

    I now see crows in a completely different light. Thank you.

  13. Intruiging post Susan,your links and highlights led me on some wonderful by-ways, thank-you! Funny how our totems choose us and so we go along with it. Mine of all things is the boar.It has featured prominently in my dreams for the last twenty years through no choice of my own, so now I am quite fond of this creature. My family laugh about it, and when my daughter was in Africa she said she thought of me every time she saw a warthog.I'm hoping she didn't say that to the rest of her travelling companions!In an antique shop cabinet, I found and purchased a dear little boar ornament, a delightful minature - as you can imagine the subject is not one that's popular so I consider it a real find!

  14. I always get crows and ravens mixed up and afraid I can't think of them w/o also thinking of "The Omen" movie.

    Beautiful picture.

    As for ladybirds, I always take them to be a sign of the majesty of creation and just how intricate and lovely it is, even in the tiniest bugs.


Hey ! We LOVE comments here at 29 Black Street.
Thanks for stopping by.