All day long I stirred pebbles with my toe, looking for signs of life.
I turned over every little stone. Memory. Poetry and song. Borrowed wisdom. Small caretakings of home and comfort.
I watched this glorious time-lapse film of the sky, filled with tempests of clouds and thunderstorms.
But still, no inspiration crept up from this dark moon ground.
(The dark moon is the banishing time. Not the time to plant seeds, or grow, or harvest.
But I did not think of that until later.)
Dissatisfied, I sent a bucket down into the well, seeking evidence that all was not empty.
When I drew it up, all I found was the merest trickle of water, too little to drink.
Just enough to remind me of the river, the sea that was not flowing through me—just enough to remind me of my thirst.
I didn't know what to do, but felt I must do something. So I moved my desk in front of the windows.
For a while, I watched the northwest wind razor the new snow from the roof, flinging it in stinging white sheets against the frigid air.
Cold dark earth, surely this ground is not completely barren? Am I just quiet now, or have I nothing to say? And isn't that all right, if so. It doesn't feel all right.
Perhaps my "shoulds" have been silencing my "coulds"?
That happens sometimes.
Long I sat, feeling downcast, no whisper stirring from within or without.
After a while, I became aware of a silent river of crows.
Their dark shapes were flowing past the windows my desk now faces, winging to the northeast in beautiful, undulating motion.
They flew in unknowable formations, in fronts and dozens, each following the other yet making his own path upon the sky.
Blessing this woman's eyes with their grace. Bearing myth on their wings, magic in each darkling feather, kin stories millennias long in their shining black eyes.
As the sun westered from mid-afternoon to dusk they streamed past, off and on, as if my house were an island in their sky-river. Juni (perched on the desk) and I watched in wonder. My own eyes began to shine; thrilled, delighted, enchanted.
Maybe the crows, known as the mega murder, were flying to a roost along the Mississippi where they gather in thousands in winter?
It is a lovely discovery, to find my new home is in the middle of a Great Crow Flyway.
This magic belongs to this place and this day. Called to me or not, I am taking it as a message from the sky and the crows, that magic is there. Even when you can't see or feel it, it is there—right on the other side of your barriers, walls, shoulds.
It is there, and it shows itself to you, wanting you to see it, calling you to see it.