the nighttime visitor


it is late. dark. i am driving his truck, a vehicle that wraps itself up around me, making me feel small, making it hard for me to see where i am going. i start up the hill, and there is something right in front of me on the driveway. not a limb blown down during today’s rain, but an owl.

the owl is not threatened by the truck, has no pressing obligations.

the owl slowly turns to face me and remains standing there for several minutes, long enough to make sure i see it clearly. then it makes another quarter turn, stretches out its wings and flies its massive body into the woods to my right.

i am immediately calmed, confident, sure that seeing this substantial, gorgeous animal at this particular time, in the midst of several distressing situations, is no accident.

i hear the familiar voices. voices that are ever-ready to assure me that seeing this owl is not by design, but merely a random act of nature. “you read way too much into everything,” they tell me again.

then i ask Her: “what say you?” and without a moment’s hesitation She answers “you know why the owl was there.”

that’s all she says. she doesn’t scoff or scold. she answers swiftly and succinctly, her voice clear and confident. i’ve called on her several times over the past few weeks, and she never hesitates, never needs to think about how to answer. it’s as though she’s been there all along, ready. waiting.


  1. Mrswhich


  2. Mrsmediocrity

    well as the girl who had a close encounter with a hawk just recently and was certain it meant something, i am sure that owl was there for a reason.
    and you do know why it was there. and that is enough.

    • whollyjeanne

      i remember your encounter with the hawk. i guess we’ll add bird girls to our string of nicknames, eh thelma?

  3. Juliedaley

    She has been there all along, ready. waiting. She has always been there. I know you know. You know I know. That is all.

    • whollyjeanne

      yes, that is all.

  4. Eliz Amaya-Fernandez

    My mother told me when I was a little girl, that only the really fortunate ones will have an owl look right at them. I believe her.

    • whollyjeanne


    • Petdavis

      I must be the lucky guy. A couple of decades or so ago we stopped at the Air Museum in Tuscon on our way through and there was an owl in a little bitty tree, right about eye level.

      I guess what your Mama said is true, I lucked through a serious stroke with little permanent damage and my wife is still putting up with me.

  5. Sally G.

    “We are all visionaries, and what we see is our soul in things.” ~Henri Amiel

    I get goosebumps every time I read or hear about experiences as you’ve just described. So magical, so spiritual – cracks my heart wide open.

    I’m so thrilled that ‘you know’. xx

  6. Kathyloh

    Well you KNOW how I stand on this one 🙂 – I’m not at home right now. In the middle of suburbia a hawk swooped and momentarily hung in the air as it redirected its dive directly in front of my window in this tract home. A coincidence? If we are not co-creating with all that is, what the heck are we doing? It’s not a question in my mind. Your owl came to you, waited for you and yes, you created the owl too. What will you make of it? BTW I love your way of saying so much with so few words. … and what of the silent beating of wings?

    • whollyjeanne

      kathy, thank you for validating this experience. i agree: if we are not co-creating, then what the heck are we doing? nicely said, my friend.

  7. Angela

    I’m late to the table, but want to add that She, like the owl, is unthreatened and pressing-obligation-free.

  8. Amy Oscar

    I will add only this: Owl medicine is afoot this week in the lives and dreams of many of my friends. Thank you for posting this.

  9. Kate Temple-West

    I’ve had some run-ins with other people’s “familiar voices” recently… They can be a truly destructive aspect of the dominant culture– snatching away the poetry of life, soul, Her. Thankful for your sharing. Gorgeous owl. What a gift– to experience and read!

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