Call of the Whippoorwill
Over the years you hear of the tales of the Whippoorwills, some
good-luck, some bad-luck but they all have real meanings to the ones who believe. When I was growing up, I went to sleep most nights during the summer to the sound of whippoorwill’s song drifting through my open window. I grew up thinking it was normal to hear such beauty of God’s creations at night until I moved out of the country and realized how much I missed the beauty of their song at night. Later in years we got into camping and we were able to hear the beauty of the whippoorwills sing again. It was different though, they were always in the distance instead of close to my childhood window, but when I did hear one in the distance the smile that appeared on my face could not mask the joy I felt. Some of the old wife’s tales was; if a whippoorwill landed on the roof of your house there would be a death in that house within the week, if a young maiden heard a whippoorwill she would make a wish and if the whippoorwill didn’t sing again then she would have to go another year before she was married, if you had back trouble and heard a whippoorwill and could do a backflip before it sung the second time your back pain would go away and never have trouble again, if you heard a whippoorwill it meant good-luck for the next day, and so many more. I always believed it meant good luck, maybe it was because it brought back my childhood memories or maybe because how could a beautiful singing voice and the repetition of a smooth song melt your heart. I always just ignored all the tales good or bad because nothing could ever change my mind on the beautiful bird I had loved since I was a child, and one night when we were camping my beliefs were confirmed when we heard a whippoorwill in the distance. After a few minutes of silence, it sang again closer this time. At first, I figured it was two, then when we didn’t hear the first one again, we knew it had to be the same one. We sat at the firepit for another ten minutes or so and my husband saw a movement within a few feet of us and nudged me, there was the whippoorwill only a couple yards from us. I couldn’t move, since I was a child, I always heard them sing and they always made me so happy to listen to them and for the first time I finally saw what one looked like. It was so small for the huge sound that came out of its body. I didn’t want to move afraid it would fly away. It stared straight into my eyes and all I could do was smile. After a few minutes it flew up in a tree near our campsite and started singing again, it was loud and smooth, but glorious. Some people might have felt uneasy with the tales, but I was at peace and felt like the world had been lifted off my shoulders. It stayed for approximately five minutes before it flew off. We sat by the firepit until the wee hours into the morning listening to whippoorwills singing across the campground. It sounded like a dozen of them and it was the first time I had ever heard so many different ones in the same area. I knew they were there for a reason, which I soon found out. My daughter visited us the next day at the campground and informed us she was expecting our first grandchild! I knew it had to be something grand for the whippoorwills to gather and one of them to come so close and true to my belief, they were my good luck omens. I told our daughter about the night before of all the whippoorwills and she smiled and said her, and her husband had heard one last night for the first time since they had moved into their new home on the outskirts of town. She had told her husband how much I loved them and when we were camping, she would hear them then. Months later when “Little Will” was born and was brought home, the first night there was a whippoorwill on their front porch singing away. For the ones that think they are bad luck, it probably was a coincidence that something bad happened. Believe in the good and the good will come to you.