Friday, September 5, 2014

The Feather Drop

Debra Mares

Tickle Pink Inn ~ Carmel, California
As I retire to our balcony at Tickle Pink Inn at Carmel-by-the-sea, facing the epic Big Sur Coast, a delicate white and grey seagull feather lands in front of me and rests comfortably at my feet.  As a rule, I don't look for symbols; but when I see them, I don't ignore them.  I investigate them.

Seagull feathers represent many things, including rising above life's tides and our love for the ocean. The seagull feather wings depict the message of flying high above doubt and believing in yourself.  Native American cultures have made the seagull a meaning of a care-free attitude, versatility and freedom.  A seagull that settles on a ship's rigging or gunwale is considered an omen for a happy journey.  Once used as a "pen," a feather symbolizes communication and thought.  Paulo Coehlo, the Brazilian author of The Alchemistlooks for a white feather before starting each new book, which he then uses to touch each page of his first draft with.
San Francisco Seagull

I've often seen seagulls throughout this 10-day California roadtrip with my too-good-for-words boyfriend David, who is watching NFL's first season game yards away from me inside our room (Go Packers!).  But this is the first time a seagull has decided to drop her feather right in front of me; or maybe it's the first time I've taken the time to notice.  Afterall, symbols are all around us, but we rarely take the time to notice them. As Angelica in The Mamacita Murders reminds us, "symbols are like angels or gut instincts, everyone has them, but not everyone pays attention to them."  To her point, this is the first time I've been alone during our roadtrip, taking the time to pay attention to what's right in front of me; and the feather is now making perfect sense.

Monterey Cypress Tree
Thoughout our 10-day journey we've reconnected with love, family and nature.  As I sit here embracing the Cypress, magestic coastline and wood-burning aroma from a nearby fireplace, it feels like Christmas and a time of rebirth.  I feel revived, strong to fly high above doubt and stay true to myself, and I'm reminded of the power of the "pen."  

I hang onto the feather's symbolism as I watch it blow away, inspired to dream, write and believe.  "I believe in the concept of 'anima mundi' (soul of the world), where each person, through total dedication to what he does, comes into contact with the inspiration of the universe," Paulo Coehlo.