The Birds April 8, 2009Posted by Mark Folse in 504, cryptic envelopment, music, New Orleans, NOLA, Toulouse Street.
Tags: Black Crowes, corvus, crows, Odein, Odin, Raven
Here on Toulouse Street we’ve had crows on our mind this past week. It began a week ago after making a remark online about maybe seeing a raven last Wednesday (from Wodin or Odin’s Day), and as I snapped pictures of the Green Man mural in the Marigny from out of the birdless sky came two crows to circle overhead and watch me. Of course Odin was served by two Corvus, Huginn and Muninn, which were his agents in the world of mortals.
Okay then, not that we’re particularly superstitious but heh (knock wood) we thought that a bit Odd. Odin in his earliest (and less bloodthirsty) aspect was associated with poetry (a plus here on Toulouse Street) and madness (including the form of madness the Celts called awen, the possession of the muse), so I have to admit to a certain, well, fondness is not quite the right word, let’s say affinity to old One Eyed Jack as Lord of Poets.
As to Odin’s warrior aspect, I’ve been intermittently re-reading Carlos Castaneda not so much for the wild mushrooming tips as for what struck me the last time I did a post 70s spin through his work: the sage advice from the later books. The concept of a brujo as a fearless warrior, and one who’s conduct is impeccable, has also been on our mind so that’s another chalk mark up on the plus side for Odin.
As to the mad side of “poetry and madness” here on Toulouse we tend toward the simply Odd, but will confess to a certain attraction that draws us occasionally to the brink of madness, to peer over the precipice and admire the twisted vista, tossing the Odd pebble over the edge to listen to it skitter into the abyss.
So for One Eye’d Jack and raven-friends everywhere here is something from the Black Crowes (natch), a song that is itself a postcard from the needle-sharp heroin edge of madness. We like it for the elegant lyric and swinging southern blues-rock sound of the Crowes, and for the birds they represent and other sundry reasonS. And so may it please you and Old One Eye’d Jack: She Talks to Angels.