One sunny day in the small fishing village of Tofino, my then home on the outer west coast of Canada, I was in the mood to visit friends. I chose Jasper and Cristina on Neill Street. Jasper was out but Cristina put on some tea and we sat chatting in her living room. I was sitting on a couch with my back to the front windows. As Christina was talking I was gazing absently across the room and out the home’s back windows, towards the forested yard beyond. At some point I began to notice not the backyard but the reflection in the back window of the front yard behind me.
And in that reflection was a crow on a wire.
Now that’s not too unusual, except the crow was upside down. So while I continued to stare at this upside down image of a crow I was thinking it must be a trick of reflection between the two opposite windows creating a reversed image. Cristina was still talking but by then I was less than half listening, being pre-occupied by this mind twister. So to confirm my optical illusion theory I turned around to look out the front window at the crow on the wire. The crow was still upside down! –And motionless. I quickly came to the conclusion it was electrocuted and dead. The wire it was on ran across the front yard from the street’s power pole to the house, only twenty feet away, so quite easy to see.
I said to Cristina, “Hey, come and look at this.”
As she looked out, the still upside down crow, hanging by its talons, began swinging back and forth making progressively larger arcs.
After a short while, this apparently very alive crow let go of one talon and continued swinging from the other-- back and forth! It then reached up with the free talon, grabbed on and let the other one go. It continued swinging upside down, only now it was also twisting from side to side!
Cristina and I looked at each other dumbfounded and then back to the coxcomb crow, which was now “walking” upside down along the wire! Suddenly the crow held on to the wire with both talons again, hung motionless for a short time, then let go, falling head first toward the ground—wings tucked tight to its sides. Just before it hit the ground it opened its wings and flew straight up to the adjacent wire nearer the porch.
Landing upright, like a normal crow, it stood still for a few seconds then fell over forward, talons loosely gripping the wire, instantly going into its reversed swinging like a gymnast on the high-bar!
Another crow was also on this wire with its head cocked, watching. Meanwhile, the performing crow carried on doing the single-talon trick. Then, before our incredulous eyes, it bent up from its upside down position, bit the wire with its beak and let go of its talons. Now, hanging by only its beak, the crow twisted back and forth! I was in awe.
Its final act was hanging head-to-earth by both talons and rotating in place, walking in circles, and one last time it hung motionless then fell towards the ground, opening its wings at just the very last split-second, and flying off.
Now for the second part of the story:
I had of course related this experience to a number of friends, but not to my girlfriend Bonnie. She had been out of town tree-planting and visiting her family in the distant province of Alberta. When she returned I began re-enacting the whole story to her, pretending I was the crow to demonstrate its wild antics (not easy to do!). While I was doing this she got this blank expression on her face and interrupted me to ask if this had happened a couple of days before the last full moon.
As it turned out, precisely on the day Cristina and I watched the crow, Bonnie had walked into a farm field near her folk’s home in Alberta and laid down grass while thinking of her friends in Tofino and me.
Bonnie practiced Wicca, a form of good magic, using it for healing and prayer, so her powers for evoking were unusually polished. So while lying on the field she decided to try and send me a telepathically projected event. She wanted something funny that I would notice. She said she first thought of a crow stealing my cinnamon bun while I had my daily munch outside our local bakeshop – but decided that wasn’t good enough (and far too common!). So she sent out from herself a message to the crows -- for them to come up with a funny event -- and released these thoughts toward me in Tofino, many hundreds of miles away.
Wow! After hearing her story I was the one with a baffled, blank expression! Things like this open my perception of reality. Its nice to know that magic is alive in this world, if only we open to allowing ourselves to be with it.
A Crow Story is copyright of Leigh R. Hilbert --All Rights Reserved