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Gookookoo

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The well worn paths of the forest floor feel like home to me. They are only a starting point to something more. Perhaps something no one has ever seen or touched. My feet often wander off trail to investigate a mossy log or to find that magical spot where land meets water.  I pick up rocks for future painting, caress the bark of an old oak tree and savor the scent of dampened leaves before the first snowfall. I look for the smallest of creatures, putting nature under a microscope.  I know he’s out there…..somewhere but I have not yet encountered the silent flier. Natives of the Chippewa tribe call him “Gookookoo”.  I have displayed calendar pictures of him on preschool walls, spoke of him in simple terms, but his magnificent eyes have never met mine. He lurks where I do not search. His screech has yet to reach me. Legend says that is a good thing.

 

muted feathers soar

over unsuspecting souls

deer mouse holds his breath

~

 

 

For Haibun Monday at dVerse Poets Pub.

Victoria is our host.  WHO can join in? You can.

The prompt begins at 3 p.m. and is open all week!

 

Image credit: pixabay.com

 

 

 

 

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23 responses »

  1. Wow. This is spectacular. A lovely haibu n and a haiku of a rare beauty. This story from the Chippewa is wonderful. It puts me in mind of the tale from the Cherokee, also of a silent forest flyer. Beautiful!

    Reply
  2. I went looking for the legend of gookookoo. I found a story told by parents to scare their children – of being caught up by the great owl like mice.

    Perhaps it is a good thing that you do not hear it. Ha.

    I got a little shiver reading. It reminded me of visiting the woods and exploring as a kid. We went far and wide exploring, always finding a bit of magic or the unexplained. Ironically, the native americans believe the owl to be closely associated with magic as well – which fits your piece.

    woh o woh

    Reply
  3. This is beautifully writ….rich in details. I appreciate the Native American lore you’ve shared here. And yes….your last line of the haiku took my breath away….The owl after all, is a predator.

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  4. Love how you took up legends… there is something so spooky and yet cool about owl… and this was good… love that line that not hearing the owl might be a good thing

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  5. “muted feathers” – perfect. Owls are creatures of myth, aren’t they? I brought a Welsh myth into my haiku. I probably should have explained it.

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  6. I enjoy legends, especially of the Native Americans, and this one is magical as it’s about owls. I love the haiku especially, Mish.

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  7. Oh, I’m loving this. I’m so entranced at the Native American view of animal totems and this wandering/wondering in the woods is so full of sensory details that I feel like going for a short drive and doing the same. Thanks for sharing this, Mish.

    Reply
  8. What a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing this. XX

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  9. Different forest, same feeling that nature is in charge. there’s a sense of balance in this poem, peace.

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  10. “They are only a starting point to something more.” … I love that.

    Also these:

    “My feet often wander off trail to investigate a mossy log or to find that magical spot where land meets water.”

    “He lurks where I do not search.”

    Reply
  11. Magnificent eyes, muted feathers and excellent imagery……beautiful!

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  12. I have not seen an owl either perhaps because I am not searching for them. I hope the legends are right that that is a good thing.

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  13. I too have not seen an owl but have heard of tribal stories about him. Those muted feathers of the owl are magnificent hunters ~ Love your haibun Mish ~

    Reply
  14. This is very beautiful writing. Mythical………loved it.

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  15. Sometimes, it is better to not have seen as darkness may follow. I have found the owl is a messenger and when one enters my life I listen.

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  16. Ooh. I hope you find them one day. 🙂

    Reply
  17. “I look for the smallest of creatures, putting nature under a microscope.”…Love this. Surely you’ll meet him one day.

    Reply
  18. ” … spoke of him in simple terms … ” – just wonderful!

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  19. Very fun. Stories of your painted rocks, your teaching, native american names and the mouse with bated breath — very fine.

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  20. Outstanding, Mish! I did see an owl flying through the woods once. We were hiking, not on a trail, and it fly right past us. We never heard a thing. truly amazing!

    Reply
  21. exquisite and rich! A wonderful haibun, indeed!

    Reply
  22. Interesting owl legends…wonder-full haibun on Gookookoo!

    Reply
  23. Sounds like you grew up on nature walks. I’m jealous ☺. A lovely haibun!

    Reply

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