Tag Archives: raven

Lunch at The Shrine with a Raven

The last few months have been hectic, in some way or another. I am sometimes amazed that I can feel this way since my lifestyle is rather stripped down and simple. I even feel guilty at times, when I contemplate a day off, as if I had not earned it. Then again, a part of me knows it has nothing to do with earning anything; it’s about stepping away at the right time in order to return refreshed and more productive.

After several weeks of juggling my time between building up an inventory of dolls, pouches and various paper mache animals to bring to new locations and replenish existing ones, keeping a client’s website up to date and managing a couple of Facebook pages, I finally had to set time aside for a delivery. It is with little hesitation that I planned to make a day of it.

I dropped MacGregor off at the dog sitter early in the morning and ventured off sans tablet or any connection to work. Destination: Grand Isle Art Works. Shining sun, not too hot, oddly no one on the road. Bliss.

I spent over an hour there, visiting with Jim, the owner. He shared the history of the gallery and the house and I toured every wonderfully colorful room. If you read up on them on their website, you’ll find the words,  “…a quirky old farmhouse built in 1797, with lots of character.” The atmosphere is indeed rich with character, and light and creative energy. I invite you to take a road trip some day.

Following our visit, I drove away in the opposite direction from home, not knowing where I might land. A turn here and there led me straight to Saint Anne’s Shrine, on Isle Lamotte. It’s still off season for them, so besides a couple of staff members and ground workers, the place was free of commotion under the great blue sky. A quick trip a bit further down the road for a bagged lunch and I was back at a picnic table by the lake.

saint anne's shrine

I don’t think my mind had had this much rest from creating articles and product descriptions and from conjuring up new art creations in a long time. I welcomed the silence; the stillness. Soon though, I had a visitor.

A huge raven perched above me in a tree and chanted its presence, or rather its interest in my sandwich. If there had been other people around, I would not have satisfied its craving, but I confess that since we were alone I left a morsel on the table for my black-feathered friend. It watched me the whole time and I hope it feasted once I left. Perhaps the squirrels beat him to it. In any case, someone received a gift.

In the Christian faith, among others, the raven is perceived as a bad omen. I understand, but am unable to feel this  way. To me, it is a beautiful and mysterious creature of great intelligence. Ravens are feared, also, when they appear in dreams. Here again, an encounter with this black beauty in my dreams makes me wake up feeling like I have received a gift. I think and feel that my love for my lunch time visitor,  yesterday, overrides any specter of darkness our human culture has imprinted upon its kind.

I drove home with a sense of clarity.

10-Minute Stories – The Crow & The Loaf

It was a crushing blow; to the raven, that is. The prize loaf was not retrievable, at least not if you were a raven living amongst humans.

The day had started on a bright note, with the discovery of a fresh loaf of bread in a dumpster, next to a sandwich shop. Humans were messy, and there was always some decent food lying around in the back of the establishment. As a matter of fact, there was usually a reasonably tasty snack lying around the front in the afternoon. All one had to do was to swoop down and grab it; eat it in mid-air, even.

ps - raven

Young ravens loved to practice the art of the swoop and adults frequently lured their young to this location for this very reason. This is precisely where Sam the raven had learned the technique, only today he felt a bit over-confident. He would admit this himself.

The dumpster had been left open. The loaf was irresistible. Why on earth a human would ditch an entire loaf made no sense at all, but ravens knew that human folly was sometimes a great blessing to their own kind.

He started from a perfect angle, on the wire above the dumpster and a bit to the right. He was a large raven, and mighty strong. Holding on to the loaf should prove easy, but in his haste to have a bite, he grabbed it from his talons and it was so hard that his beak could not take a good grasp of it. It slipped and fell in the middle of the highway.

Sam was sitting back on the wire, contemplating his embarrassing circumstances, when he noticed a female human walk to the road, pick up the loaf and motion for him to follow her behind the building. There, she placed the loaf down and gestured to Sam, who had indeed followed, to resume his feast.

And there, Sam shared his meal with fellow ravens. No one said a word, yet he was still a bit embarrassed. Indeed, he was a bit of a blushing crow.


Topic: Spoonerisms. Begin with “a crushing blow,” end with “a blushing crow.” For this exercise, I found inspiration in an incident I actually experienced myself, one day, when I retrieved a bag of nuts from a busy road after seeing a raven try to get to it, and invited him to follow me to a safer place where I put the snack down for him to enjoy.

The Book: Take Ten For Writers