Crumbs From the Corner: Adventures in Woolgathering

Friday, September 21, 2012

An Owl, a Mouse and a Crumb

For Tammy- who likes owls- on her birthday

I dream sometimes that I'm a great barn owl, trailing the darkness of a forest, always the same darkness and the same forest.
There's a little grey mouse between my claws.
Nothing ever alters but the creatures I carry. 
On other nights, when I'm not the owl, I'm the mouse instead, sailing to somewhere new.
There's a crumb in my belly, and I'm grateful I had time to eat before I was borne aloft into the night.
As we soar, Owl and I, there's something stirring inside me that's even better than the crumb: a terrific thrill of adventure. I don't know where I'm going or what's going to happen next but I surely won't end up where I started.
I don't know where the owl will bring me to.
I think the owl isn't sure either.
The only thing the owl is certain of is the comfort of the thick, black forest and the endless promise of happy hunting. 
I don't remember how I know this, exactly, but perhaps the owl makes small talk with me as we drift along, and tells me what it likes about the forest.
Or then again, maybe I've dreamed of being the owl so many times that I remember a little bit of what it's like, even when I'm the mouse.
Other nights, the dream is that I'm a crumb tucked inside a mouse that's being carried by a barn owl. 
I think about this a lot: if the mouse hadn't paused in that necessary instant to swallow me whole, he would still be skittering about on his old forest floor, wondering what to do next, wondering if that end of the forest could possibly be all there was in the world.
Wherever the mouse is bound for, that will be because of me.
I dream sometimes that I'm an enormous barn owl with a tendency towards the comfortable and the known; I dream I'm the smallest mouse- but never a frightened one- that interprets everything as an incredible adventure.
And I dream sometimes that I'm a very small crumb, thoroughly invisible and still making all sorts of things happen.

No comments:

Please look around, explore my writing, leave a crumb:
I welcome comments and thoughts.