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Tuesday 27 September 2011

The Sad Tale of Smallest Raven 2

For the image and the prompt, my thanks go to Magpie Tales and for the myth connection also to The Gooseberry Garden

Long, long ago, in the darkest
of dark days beyond recall,
before the human race was born -
or even thought about -
the only land was Spirit Land
where only ravens lived.

So dark was it that Smallest Raven 2,
hereafter simply to be known as Raven -
suddenly as close as any raven ever came
to nervous breakdown or insanity -
took fright and flight, and with
a pebble in its beak, made its great break
for freedom in the wider world outside.
Soon tiring of the pointless pebble,
Raven let it go and watched it fall
and hit the sea, then saw it swell
and go on swelling, long beyond
the point where it became an island,
on and on until it had become
a major land mass, greater by far
than Spirit Land. Now Raven flew
down to inspect what he had caused
to be created, and was overcome.

He saw a clam with tiny creatures
trapped inside. He pecked hard at
the shell until he'd made a hole
through which the prisoners
could find their way to freedom.
They very soon began to grow, becoming
the first humans of the world.
To one of these new creatures
Raven lost his heart: her raven hair
and raven soul held him in thrall.
But this was only to incense
the ruling spirit in the Raven Land,
our Raven's great, great grandfather,
Raven Maximus the Sixteenth.

Raven Maximus the Sixteenth
pecked a hole in Heaven's floor,
bigger than the hole that Raven pecked
in the clam's shell, and through
it poured a mighty flood to drown
both Raven and his lover - and then
the vast majority of that first human race.
Only Noah and all his family were spared.


Rachna Chhabria said...

Nice poem about Raven Maximus.

kaykuala said...

Very Good Dave! How you relate it to the beginnings and the end of the world citing Noah' Ark at the end.All because of love and intrigues.


jabblog said...

Oh, I love this - it could join the ranks of the great creation myths of the world. Ravens appear in many legends.

Tigerbrite said...

Wonderful. Such imagination!

Marbles in My Pocket said...

Awesome write, David! I love the tie-in to the great flood and ark. Very well done!

chiccoreal said...

Dear Dave: Love this modern take on the creation myth! The words flow with might like the waters of the great flood. I like Raven Maximus the Sixteenth as he is so personable. 16 times the floods as in Noah's days is a lot of Re-Creat-ION for the dear Raven's lineage!:)

Dave King said...

Thanks for saying.

Thanks. I have been a bit creative with the myths!

Yes, there is something about a raven... not sure what it is, but you can kinda feel it's right for myth.

A warm welcom to you. Thanks for visiting and for your much appreciated comment.

Marbles in My Pocket
Good to have you visiting. Thanks for doing so and for commenting. Much appreciate your kind remarks.

Catfish Tales
And wonderful to have you visiting! Welcome, and thk you so much for the comment.

It's really godo to hear your thoughts on my post. Thank you for sharing them. They are much appreciated.

Reflections said...

Love the re-creation story. There is a mystical, magical feel for me about ravens, so to see him create is magical in and of itself. Nice piece.

ArtistUnplugged said...

Wow, love that photo. Really nice piece about the raven and beginning. I could just rave on about it! :) Thank you for your kind comments at my site.

Ann Grenier said...

Wow, such imagination! A Raven creation story. Yes, I can see it clearly in the picture. Pretty amazing reaction to this prompt, Dave.

Maxwell Mead Williams Robinson Barry said...

you start with a traditional story telling tone, which makes the read more like a prose or a folk tale,

fantastic read, exceptional story retelling.


Thanks for the sunshine to the gooseberry garden.

Maxwell Mead Williams Robinson Barry said...

you start with a traditional story telling tone, which makes the read more like a prose or a folk tale,

fantastic read, exceptional story retelling.


Thanks for the sunshine to the gooseberry garden.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Dare I say Dave that I like this version better than the original Noah's Ark story.

Scarlet said...

I enjoyed this tale of beginning and ending of the world. Very creative take on the prompts...the raven metaphor is a powerful one too~

Helen said...

Dave, your myth is full of magic.

CiCi said...

What an ending. You have a sense of humor that is catchy.

earlybird said...

Great read. Well told and with a wry twist.

Linda Bob Grifins Korbetis Hall said...

fantastic story,

it is good to be reminded it and see it with added charm.

Thanks for sharing.

Carl said...

Very old testament with vengeful gods and wonderous imagery. great work Dave!

Eileen T O'Neill ..... said...


It was a special treat to visit your Blog and to find this piece of writing. A very nice, spiritual journey back to the beginning of times. In this present world of depression and austerity, your words had an added value. That of escapisim!


Tumblewords: said...

Ravens carry great myths in their travels. I'm particularly fond of this one!

Carl said...

You inspired me to visit magpie tales and try my hand at this one. I wish I had sen the image before I read your post. Your words are now running around my head. i hope to scratch out something presentable tonight and will post on my blog if I feel I get something worth sharing.


Lolamouse said...

Very cool story! Seems someone is always incensed about loving outside of one's own circle!

Susie Clevenger said...

The feel of folklore with perhaps a hint of Poe...Nice work!

Tommaso Gervasutti said...

Great Dave, and always Blake in the background.

Lilly said...

what a delightful perspective...i know it's sad, and i feel that sadness, but it's a beautiful sadness from my point of view...you are adding here a new dimension to the overall mythology of the raven, and i love this!

Rose said...

A delightful raven tale - a wonderful creation indeed :)

Marinela said...

Beautiful Fantastic Write Up!
Love it!

The Bug said...

I like it! An excellent story.

Windsmoke. said...

Very vivid imagery. I was flying along with the Raven all the way until the end. I reckon the Raven is an evil bird, i don't why maybe its just me :-).

JeannetteLS said...

I'm sorry. I must read this only aloud, with drumming. And maybe dancing slowly in the dark, around a fire. So it can be handed down in the oral tradition, as all good myths must be.

Dave, Dave, Dave. Your mind is quite the magical maze, isn't it! I was afraid you had not written today, but I saw, thank goodness, that you had.

Mary said...

Bravo...I love how you have used this picture to create a myth.

sunny said...

hi Mr dave king i have recently joined your blog.to be very honest i do not about much of that poem but i really like the picture it take me back when i was ten years old.i would like if you also join my blog named as "desire".thanks alot' please response me back.

Isabel Doyle said...

Fabulous (in all senses of the word) telling of the flood
Isabel x

Misterio Vida said...

beauuuuuuuuutifully depicted the scene when there were no humans and just the spirit... loved it...and the Flood....

Dave King said...

Hi All!
My sincere thanks to everyone who has visited - and especially to all who left comments. Unprecedented numbers! (I've always hankered for an opportunity to use that phrase.) But coinciding, alas, with a couple of potentially manic days for me - further complicated by me having a birthday tomorrow - should not happen at my time of life, I know! Well, this preamble is to say that I may not get to everyone individually as soon as I would wish, but I shall be on the case, have no fear.

Thanks and good to have you visiting. I feel the same way about ravens. Strange and eerie.

Thank you once more for your generous comments, which are very much appreciated.

Ann Grenier
Hi! Welcome. Good to have your comments. Thank you very much for them.

A warm welcome to the blog and my thanks for your thoughts on the post. I agree with your comments on the opening tone.

The Weaver of Grass
Of course you may say that. I, of course, could not possibly comment - and certainly have no intention of disagreeing! Seriously though, thank you for another much appreciated response.

Thank you for that, but it's really the world that is full of magic. (As I see it, anyway.)

Thank you for that, though I think m aybe you flatter me!

Hi! And a warm welcome to the blog. Thank you for your kind words.

The Cello Strings
Really good to have your thoughts on it. Thank you.

The O.T. has all the best stories - well, all those the devil doesn't have! Thanks.

Thank you for such a wonderful response. It was most exciting to read and was very much appreciated.

I agree with you: they do. There is definitely something special about them.

Good for you, and yes, I do understand what you are saying. I find it much more difficult to write to a prompt after reading the responses of others. I shall look forward to reading yours - but I may not get there today! Still, I shall try.

Thank you - and I just love your brilliant pick-up of that point. Wish I had thought of it! Thanks doubly!

Mmm... I can live with that! Nice summing up, if a bit flattering. Many thanks for it, and a very warm welcome to you.

Dave King said...

Thanks once again. Well spotted.

HI! A warm welcome to you and heart-felt thank for your kind comments, which are most encouraging. It's really good to hear that you liked the story.

Many thanks for that.

Good to have you visiting and to hear that you liked the poem. Thanks you so much for your kind comments.

The Bug
Thank you. Much appreciated comment.

It's certainly a strange bird, or at any rate feels strange in some way. I suspect that everyone feels differently about the raven. I wonder how much of that is down to the myths and how much the myths are a result of it.

I like your suggestion very much indeed. Yes, I can see and hear it thus. I'm not so sure about my mind being a magical maze, though a lot of folk would agree about it being a maze, I think! Thank you for a lovely response.

Thank you very much.

My thanks to you for joining the blog and for your visit, plus a warm welcome. It is really good to have your comments and to hear that you like the poems. I shall indeed be along to visit your blog, though it may take a while to get there - for the reasons given above.

Very many thanks for that. It's always good to have your comments.

As always, your comments are encouraging and very warmly received. Thank you for them.

Tess Kincaid said...

Very nice, Dave...I thoroughly enjoyed this...

The Orange Tree said...


you are a fantastic story teller.

Margaret said...

This just screams for illustrations. You did wonderfully with your words and imagination. A really fun mythological story!

Dave King said...

Very tardy in answering, I'm afraid, but it was good to hear that you liked the post.

The Orange Tree
A warm - if belated - welcome to you. Good to have you visiting and commenting.

Much thanks, and yes, I do agree that it screamed for illustrations, but I was very hard pushed for time when writing and posting it - and afterwards, which is why this reply is so delayed!

ds said...

Wonderful--love the way you tied the raven myth to the magpie photo (isn't it nice when two poetry prompts coincide). Thank you.

Jackie Jordan said...

Excellent work, Dave. Your stories, and I've read alot, are by far some of the best that I have read since starting to blog four months ago. They flow well and have wonderful plots. I'm very impressed ... I'm surprised that you haven't published a collection on Smashwords.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the journey that this piece brought me on. It reminds me of so many Native American Indian tales on life and creation. Nice!