Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.’

Many of you would have heard of or read the Edgar Allan Poe poem, “The Raven”. Here is the first stanza as a reminder…

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`’Tis some visitor,’ I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door –
Only this, and nothing more.’

Yesterday I had a raven encounter I thought I’d share.

Schools and students have permission to use this graphic for non-commercial, educational purposes.

This little guy is an Australian raven (Corvus coronoides). They are reasonably common around here and often seen in groups if you know where to look. Yesterday, I had been out walking along a favourite track when I stopped and sat to enjoy the quiet. The quiet didn’t last long as I soon had company.

Was it an unkindness of ravens, perhaps a storytelling of ravens or even a conspiracy of ravens? All are used as collective nouns for ravens. Whatever their motive, about 100 ravens landed in a large tree near me. Grabbing my phone, I made a recording of what I heard. Click “The sounds of about 100 ravens.” below.

The sounds of about 100 ravens

Schools and students have permission to use this audio recording for educational, non-commercial purposes.

`Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!’ I shrieked upstarting –
`Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian shore!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my loneliness unbroken! – quit the bust above my door!
Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!’
Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.’

It’s unexpected moments like these when you’re a part of something not man made which can form memories and add to experience. At least they weren’t crows as collectively they are a murder of crows. I survived to tell the tale so I think I encountered a storytelling of ravens.