The Magic of Ravens and Vermillion Cliffs

a black Yamaha MT07 motorcycle parked looking out at the Vermillion Cliffs on Route 89a in Arizona

This morning, while I was out in the yard with my dog, I heard the rawk-rawk of a raven. Here on Long Island, sighting a raven isn’t an everyday occurrence. When they do cross my path, because my mind is filled with fantastical romanticism and metaphor, it feels special. It is as if they’ve arrived to bring me a message.

It’s probably important to point out that I don’t actually think that ravens are communicating some grand scheme with me and that I know that synchronicity isn’t real. Even so, when I see a raven, it feels like the black abyss of their wings carries a message for me, a signal. Wake up, it’s time to remember! For reasons unknown even to me, my mind wants to attach meaning to such encounters.

Thinking back to adolescence, I recall asking my mom if something which I was hoping for would go the way I wanted it to. My questions were always posited as if she were an oracle and had a depth of knowing that could bring me relief from my discomfort of not knowing. My mind so desperately wanted to believe that the unknown could be known, that seemingly random or uninfluenced things could in fact give up their secrets if you were able to interpret the messages the universe was sending you.

The truth is I want to believe in signs, in secret missives from the universe. Even when my rational mind is saying, “that’s stupid” there is something comforting about believing that life is full of unexplainable mystery; that fantastical things that make absolutely no sense from a scientific standpoint are happening. When people stop believing in magic the world can become pretty damned banal. Religion, superstition, magic, ghosts, Santa Claus, messages from birds ~ pick your poison.

Visiting the western parts of the US, my experience with seeing ravens was far more common. In fact on one trip in California, it felt like I had a raven following me and greeting me each morning. It was there all the time! Such is the inner monologue of someone who sees signs in everything.

It’s plain to me that such talk comes across as nutty; signs and messages from birds. Messages! From birds! Admittedly, if someone in the office, say Stu from accounting, told me that corvids brought him messages, I’d smile politely and think that he’d lost the plot.

On a completely unrelated note, here are some pictures from Route 89A in Arizona heading through the Vermillion cliffs National Monument.

Vermillion Cliffs on Route 89a in Arizona
yellow desert flowers along route 89a in Arizona in the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument area
a national monument sign along route 89a in Arizona in the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument area


Rachael is the whimsical writer behind the 20+ year old Girlie Motorcycle Blog. As a freelance blogger, she is on a mission to inspire laughter, self-examination, curiosity, and human connection. Girlie Motorcycle Blog can be found on several Best Motorcycle Blog lists.

You may also like...

3 Responses

  1. Chris says:

    I think when we were young all of is thought our parents had all the answers. At least I did.

    And my wife feels butterflies are her grandfather coming to check on her.

  2. Lowell says:

    Rachel, nice photos. I recall your raven photo in your “Farmington to Cimarron, New Mexico on Route 64” post on 11-20-23.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.