Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Crow Medicine

Felted raw wool tapestry, feather, shell, tea stained bone bead, wood

Crow.  Magic.  Sacred law.  Shape shifting.  Manifesting change in the physical world.  Protection.  Communication.  

There is a medicine story that tells of Crow’s fascination with her own shadow. She kept looking at it, scratching it, pecking at it, until her shadow woke up and became alive. Then Crow’s shadow ate her. Crow is Dead Crow now.
Jamie Sams & David Carson, Medicine Cards, p.133

That little hint of a medicine story, it's more Jungian shadow work.  Not to reject your dark side, but to integrate it with your light into a healthy whole.  It is a warning, though, of obsession with your shadow self.  It can become the dominant self if you don't interact with it in a healthy way. 


Here's a great article, "6 Terrifying Ways Crows Are Way Smarter Than You Think."  It talks, for instance about language and crows having regional dialects. 

So regarding language, indulge an old English major a non-sequitur.  One of the things I used to embellish this crow tapestry is a "Tea Stained Bone Bead."  I love the sound of those two pounding spondaic feet, so reminiscent of the brutal sounds of Old English that it brought to my mind the text of Beowulf.  For my amusement, and possibly your enjoyment, here is a grim and musically gorgeous passage from the classic tale:

"His fatal departure was regretted by no-one who witnessed his trail, the ignominious marks of his flight where he'd skulked away, exhausted in spirit and beaten in battle, bloodying the path, hauling his doom to the demon's mere. The bloodshot water wallowed and surged, there were loathsome upthrows and overturnings of waves and gore and wound-slurry. With his death upon him, he had dived deep into his marsh-den, drowned out his life and his heathen soul: hell claimed him there."--excerpt from Beowulf

Tapestry, partially complete

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