"A Barred Owl"
The warping night-air having brought the boom
Of an owl's voice into her darkened room,
We tell the wakened child that all she heard
Was an odd question from a forest bird,
Asking of us, if rightly listened to,
"Who cooks for you?" and then "Who cooks for you?"
Words, which can make our terrors bravely clear,
Can also thus domesticate a fear,
And send a small child back to sleep at night
Not listening for the sound of stealthy flight
Or dreaming of some small thing in a claw
Borne up to some dark branch and eaten raw.
Stone Owl Sculpture by John Philip Capello
Looking at the stone sculpture by John Philip Capello makes me think of a little altercation I had with my mom during my early teens. I can distinctly hear my mother's voice rising up from behind me. "Robyn, what on earth are you doing?"
Horror of all horrors........ caught red handed. ....mincing fieldmice... fur...tails...bones and all .....in mom's mincer. I had 2 hungry owlets that had to be fed. Our induna's children had brought me several limp field mice that had been caught in primitive tin can traps that very morning. These they usually roasted on sharpened sticks over a fire before eating them...with relish I might add. But today they had "gifted" the dead mice to me in exchange for sweets. Anyway after mom looked into her mincer and saw the mangled mess of mouse I was threatened within an inch of my life so had to revert to wrapping minced beef in cottonwool to feed my hungry pets. Such is life growing up on a farm.
Wire Owl by Elizabeth Berrien
Picasso Owl Print