Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Kingfisher Ink

Click image(s) to see the larger version(s).

These gorgeous Kingfishers come from the Flickrstream of Graeme Fraser and are licensed by Creative Commons.

In ancient Greece, the week before and the week after the winter solstice were peaceful days on the sea allowing the kingfisher to hatch her egg. As the Greek goddess Alcyone was represented by the kingfisher we now call these days the Halcyon Days. From Wikipedia:
The myth of Ceyx and Alcyone describes how Alcyone, as recorded by Ovid, pines all day by the shore where Ceyx was destined to return. Unfortunately Ceyx, who is referred to as the son of the morning star (a reference to the solstice, not anything satanic), has died in a shipwreck. Alcyone finds this out, and throws herself into the sea. The gods feel pity for Ceyx and Alcyone, transforming them into Halcyon Birds. The first Halcyon days were those days in winter, on which Alcyone first lay her eggs. Her father Aeolus, god of the wind, calms the seas each year since so she can lay them again.
These are considered days of peace and prosperity. I like to think of these days as a calming time before the insanity of the mainstream holidays kicks in.

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