Monday, October 31, 2011

Owl's well that ends well

An award winning picture book.
Have it read to you on Youtube!
Who? Close as darkness.
Who? Whose cold voices
trembling in the trees?

The owls are calling.
Ice in their voices.
Moon in their glittering eyes.

Cocooned in dreams
my sleep troubled
by the owl's calling

till the black throat
of the early cock splits
night for the furious sun

to spring up singing.


My daughter showed me this freaky owl awhile back and I have been saving it to share with you now.  I am not sure it is for real. Make sure you watch until the end, for the most surprising transformation!

 Transforming Owl

Fellow Richard Armitage fan Ana Cris also mentions a certain type of owl in her post called: I'm Not Going Out There on her new blog La Loba :A jornada de uma alma (Wolf Woman: A soul's journey). She posts twice - first in English and next in her own language of Portugese. I was introduced to Ana Cris where she is a frequent commenter over at Servetus's blog, Me + Richard Armitage. It is lovely to meet RA fans from all over the world -- Ana Cris is from Brazil!

One of the most famous bird artists would have to be John James Audubon (1785-1851)

Canadian naturalist painter Robert Bateman is famous for his realistic depiction 
of animals in their native habitat.

Native Canadian artists paint in a style known as Woodland.  I like this Anishanabee artist's depiction of an owl. This artwork by Robert Kakegamic can be found in Winnipeg, Manitoba at the Wahsa Gallery.

  Here is an awesome website of arts and crafts and wonderful things all to do with owls!

 Probably Canada's most famous owl of all, wasn't a real owl, or even what he appeared to be. The man known as Grey Owl (1888-1938) was thought (by white society) to be of First Nations origin.  He was actually born Archibald Belaney in England and dreamed of coming to Canada since he was very young to live his life as a native person.  He finally arrived in Canada in 1906. He lived with the Ojibway peoples in Quebec and Ontario and learned much from them.
After several failed relationships he met a young woman who had a huge influence on him. Named Anahareo, she was of Mohawk and Iroquois descent and much younger than he was when they married  She persuaded him to give up trapping for a living and instead write about his experiences.  Grey Owl's writing had a huge influence on the conservation movement.  His log cabin home where he lived while writing is a historic site in  Prince Albert National Park in Saskatchewan.

Born Archie Belaney, known as Grey Owl

A movie was made in 1999 starring Pierce Brosnan. Although it was quite factual, I couldn't quite believe Brosnan in the role as he was just a bit too movie star beautiful to seem real.

If the movie is ever remade, I would vote Richard Armitage for the role!  He is a better character actor and can easily transform himself (like that owl!) to fit into any role!

Do you see the resemblance?


Owl and the Pussycat is a very famous nonsense poem by Edward Lear, published in 1871.  Beatrix Potter was fascinated with Edward Lear's The Owl and the Pussycat and even did her own illustration of the poem which is on display in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, England. Click here to see it.
 This title was also used for a movie made in 1970 starring Barbra Streisand and George Segal.  This one is definitely not for the kids! It's pretty racy and very dated but it looks like it would be good for a chuckle.  Here is a trailer:

Guardians of Ga'hoole is a series of children's books written by Katherine Lasky. It is a fantasy adventure about a group of owls who are on a quest for justice and must escape danger from the evil usurpers of the kingdom. Zack Snyder made the first three books into a movie last year.  I hope you enjoy this preview which highlights a song by Owl City.

Take to the Sky / by Owl City from the movie Legend of the Guardians (2010)

Here are a couple of cartoon owls from Disney movies you will probably remember:

Winnie the Pooh's Owl

Archimedes from Disney's The Sword in the Stone


When I was in Leeds, UK last summer I was fascinated by all the gorgeous owl statues everywhere I looked in the middle of the city! I took lots of pictures as it seemed very unusual to have a city mascot (especially of an owl).  According to Wikipedia, the owl symbol is part of the city's coat of arms, established in 1666.
This one shows 3 silver owls which are attributed to the coat of arms of Leeds' first city alderman Sir John Saville. The sheep in the center symbolizes Leeds' history as a center for the wool trade. This coat of arms has not been used since 1921, as it has been replaced by a newer design.

 I enjoyed my visit to Leeds and would love to return some day.

In the Harry Potter universe O.W. L. stands for Ordinary Wizarding Level and it is type of test or examination which must be passed in order to become a wizard.

Owls play an important role in the Harry Potter series of books by J.K. Rowling. They are the messengers and every wizard must have one!

Hedwig the Snowy Owl from the Harry Potter movie series

Now here is a wizard who performs magic nearly on a daily basis for me!  
I have him in costume for Halloween, so perhaps he is not quite as attractive as usual. 
But at least he looks better than his sidekick! Can you tell whooo that is?

Happy Halloween to OWL of you!


bccmee said...

Happy Owl-Oween to you too!

I have not seen the movie Grey Owl, but based on your description of the lead character, I agree that Richard Armitage would do a stellar job! In the poster of the film, Pierce Brosnan looks to me like Charlie Sheen, LOL!

CDoart said...

Oh, I love owls. What a wonderful collection of owls. I have the DVD of "Grey Owl". I should now watch it some time, but there is another actor always distracting me from it ;o)

Anonymous said...

What timing you have! I just watched "Miss Potter" yesterday (movie about Beatrix Potter).

I know this blog is about your favourites (which are often my favs too) but I wanted to share my fav owl....Mr. Dressup's owl!

Happy Halloween!

Phylly3 said...

@bccmee - Oh dear! Pierce Brosnan is much nicer than Charlie Sheen! But I can see that he does look similar. LOL!
@CDoart - I know what you mean about distRActions! The movie is very interesting though, you should watch it! :) Pierce Brosnan is certainly not hard to look at! ;)
@tyme4t - I LOVE Miss Potter! - I mentioned that movie at least once before. As for Mr. Dressup - thanks for bringing that up! Totally loved that show and intend to do a post sometime mentioning it - but I totally forgot about his owl!
Thanks for commenting!

Anonymous said...

Hi phylly,
Fabi showed me your blog, and I must say that my heart grew in my chest. You, girls, are lovely. And increasingly surprises me with the things that are created around the RA. I do not know the story of Grey Owl, I go running to the video store now! I'm from Brazil.
Ana Cris

Traxy said...

Big thumbs up for this post! I love owls, they are beautiful creatures. We used to be able to hear one from the bedroom late at night (probably in the trees across the road) where we lived before ... was magical. :)

Pierce Brosnan as a Native American just strikes me as wrong on so many levels! Even if he's very easy on the eyes ...

I love Archimedes in Sword in the Stone, and of course, being a fan of Harry Potter, of course I love all of them too! In fact, I preferred what they did with Hedwig in HP7:1, because I thought what happened in the book was stupid. Why would you put her in a cage when she'd be much safer flying on her own?!

Ooh. The symbol of the family that used to live at Wollaton Hall (our nearest mansion) was an owl with a crown. Like this one [image]. :)

Phylly3 said...

@Ana Cris - Thank you for visiting and for your kind words! I am very glad that Fabi directed you here. I always assume people know about my blog as I have been making comments on blogs all over cyberspace a year before starting my own, which has been around for for over a year and a half now. Your blog is very interesting and I admire how you write it in both languages! I did think you were from Brazil, but I didn't want to make a mistake, and didn't have time to check first. I will edit that spot where I say you are from "somewhere in South America" :) That sounded really silly, I know! Thanks for correcting me!

Phylly3 said...

@Traxy - I thought you'd like the HP references. I will have to reread the last book I can't remember exactly what happened. And believe it or not I still haven't seen the last movie! I saw Pt. 1 but not part II! You see I have to go out of town to see a movie and the last time I had a chance it was a choice between HP7pt.2 and Captain America. So you know which one I picked. Even if it was only 4 minutes (or so) of screen time - it was the best 4 minutes EVER!!
Nice owl picture! Owls with crowns - who knew!? :)

Anonymous said...

Lovely to read your post featuring Grey Owl. I've always been fascinated by singular Brits who have been able to blend into and embrace completely different cultures - T.E. Lawrence being another, Sir Richard Burton, etc. (Love your "cartoon". Mr. A looks as much Great Snowy Owl as wizard. :D


Phylly3 said...

@fitzg - Thanks so much for your comments. I agree about those fascinating Englishmen! LOL about RA wizard/owl. I almost made him into an owl (it was funny too) but somehow I couldn't do it to him!