Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore; “Tis the wind and nothing more!” –The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe



I take Wall street in the morning on my way to my big girl job.  I take the same route every day and for the most part it’s the same thing every day.  The last couple of weeks however I’ve noticed something that at first sighting wouldn’t seem too out of the ordinary.  Over the top of the Wilco building in downtown Midland I noticed a small number of Ravens, otherwise known as shit birds, circling.  Every morning on my way to my big girl job the murder grew.  As you know “murder” is a word used to describe a group of crows and/or ravens, kinda like a gaggle of geese.  The murder grew every time I passed and today I had to pull over and take pictures (and a short video) cause DAYUM! I did some reading up on what the cause for such a gathering of grackles could be, I say grackle since without seeing them up close there’s really no way to tell, and what I found was pretty disturbing.  (I’ve also heard a group of grackles be referred to as a plague, and with good reason) There are several reasons for this circling behavior.  They could simply be riding a “thermal”, which is updrafts of warm air, usually carrying them in a circular pattern, that large birds will take advantage of to rest their wings and help them fly higher than they would otherwise be able to under their own power.  Sometimes they can be seen deliberately circling smaller areas closer to treetops, possibly scoping out potential food or prey.

Neither of the aforementioned explanations seems to fit the scenario which brings us to something more sinister.   Crows and ravens have long been associated with ominous circumstances such as death and foreboding.  They are known to be scavengers which means they will eat pretty much anything, trash, insects, other birds eggs, any kind of food you offer them, carrion….. They’ve been known to sometimes feed on dead carcasses and hang around battlefields. It’s been said they will gather at place where death is imminent.  I also read that a murder of crows can be seen  circling in the days and or weeks leading up to a storm so I think it’s safe to say they got it right.  A murder of crows forewarning the storm? That’s the most logical explanation.

Although, I wouldn’t mind having access to go up and have a look around on the roof, just to make sure.  Would you go?

More From The Basin's Classic Rock