I wanted blue jays and cardinals with their bright wings, the mockingbird's song, its fluttering dance, the gentle mourning dove. I wanted sweetness and peace and light entertainment out my window. Then came the Raven. The songbirds scattered. The raven devoured the seed and squawked its ugly, demanding caw. I shooed it away and called for my charming little birds. I scattered more seed on the driveway and went inside to wait. Then returned the Raven. Instead of sweetness, I got resentment. Instead of peace, I got noise and chaos. Instead of entertainment, I got real life mess. Daily I waged war to rid myself of this unwelcome guest. But daily it returned. I glared at it through the window panes or angrily waved it onto the eaves. Still stayed the Raven. Finally I gave in, gave up on pleasant, mild and soothing and began to feed the raven, to watch the raven, to love the raven. I began to admire its glossy black feathers, to see its beauty, its curious intelligence, its strutting personality. The raven seemed to pierce me with its intense dark eye. Perhaps it understood my secret corners that stay hidden from the light. Perhaps it knew my sorrow and would dwell with me there. In the presence of the raven I began to sense an answering caw from deep within, wild and strange. Songbirds are nice, but I've come to believe that I will never be whole until I Welcome the Raven.
by Celeste Boudreaux, September 2018
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