Flying Owl

The Tale of Brother Owl


Brother Owl didn't always stay awake at night. He once was a beautiful day bird. Owl could out sing, out fly, out hunt, and out think any bird in the forest He was Wind's best student. There was nothing Owl could not do better than any other bird. He never let any creature help him, or tell him what to do. He would tell them, "Who are you to help me?" laugh, and fly away. This left the poor animal sad and feeling unwanted.

Eagle, Hawk, Duck, Turkey, and Crane and the rest of Owl's family loved him very much. They knew no other bird could fly like Owl. He flew so high and fast no other bird could keep up with him. He never stopped to rest, eat, or to listen to Wind's teachings.

Wind liked Owl very much. She never got angry at him for leaving a class early or flying off to play. Wind knew Owl learned and remember his lessons faster than any other animal in the woods. Yet , he did warn Owl. He told him to be careful were he flew. He told him not to fly into Moon's land, Moon was his cousin. For if he did bad things would happen. He told Owl. " In that place, Mother Earth can not help her children, even Grandfather Sky was powerless".

All the creatures of the earth were afraid of Moon. They knew he hated his brother's, Sun's, day friends. He wanted their power to fly where ever they wanted. Birds never flew past the protection of grandfather sky. They even slept at night so as not to see Moon's ugly face every night. They knew that just looking into Moon's eyes would turn them into stars.

Owl did not believe the stories about moon. He thought Wind and his family were only trying to scare him. One day he decided to fly higher than he had ever done before. Owl reached the land of the moon without anything happening to him. So he did it, time and time again. His flights frightened every living thing on the ground and under water. The fear was, what Moon would do to punish Owl for his foolishness.

Then one night while in Moon's land Owl lost his way. Many say Moon took him to his lodge and taught him many things. All the birds knew they would never see Owl again.

One evening while all the animals slept they heard a loud cry coming from Owl's home. No one would dare leave the safety of their home to see what was wrong with Owl. They were afraid Moon would see them and turn them into a bat or a night creature.

Blinded by Moon's light, Owl was forced to stay in the dark. As he fell back to the ground, he screamed so loud that Moon stole his voice. Feeling sorry for Owl, Wind gave him the magic to form a three letter word, to remind us what lessons he had not learned. He told Owl that it is not what you can do, the why you can do it, or how you do it, that counts. It is, " How you Watch, Honor, and Obey, the Ways that Helps Organize your life into a Worthy, Humble, Order. It removes Weaknesses, Helpless and Obstacles".

Owl reminds us, while dreams come to teach us the ways, what we must remember and what is important. So when you can't sleep or are stressed, take a moment and listen closely to Owl's word and hear Wind's message.

CINPorch Archives
From: "Wenonah Chapman"
To: Message Board
Subject: The Tale of Brother Owl--Well, it IS Native American History Month!
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 1999 21:13:18 -0500


Indigenous Peoples' Literature Return to Indigenous Peoples' Literature
Compiled by: Glenn Welker




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