Crows by Anonymous
One black crow, bad luck for me.
Two black crows, good luck for me.
Three black crows, a son shall be born in the family.
Four black crows, a daughter shall be born in the family.
Five black crows shall be a funeral in the family.
Six black crows, if they fly head on, a sudden death.
Seven black crows with their tails towards you, death within seven
There was a young man, not so very long ago, who had been to sea for
years. He was married, but had no children. He was one of the most
spirited men you ever saw. He used to complain of his dreams. He said,
"All at once last Sunday I was up in the air, and I saw the vessel I was
in going at great speed, making for a mountain, and I tried as hard as I
could to keep her from the mountain. I don't believe I was asleep at all,
I could see it so plainly. I went along in the air, looking at seven black
crows all the time. I got dizzy, and the vessel seemed to lower on to the
earth. The vessel lowered within a few hundred feet of the earth, and I
saw what I thought were fairies. I thought I had been there for days; in
truth, it seemed to me I had been up there for three days, and that I
could hear the fairies with mournful sounds drawing a coffin. I watched
and watched, and saw seven crows on the coffin. It seemed as if they were
going to bury someone. Whilst the coffin was going the seven crows flew up
and bursted, and the heavens were illuminated more strongly than by the
sun. Then I lost sight of the fairies, but saw some big giants in white
walking about, and there was a big throne with a roof to it. And all at
once I was in total darkness, but I could hear things flapping about,
flying through the air. Then I saw the moon rising and all the stars, and
all sorts of objects flying through the air. And one came to me, and put
his hand upon my shoulder, saying: 'Prepare to meet us to-morrow.'
After that everything went dark again. The first thing I knew I was in a
ship steering, and the seven black crows were in front of me. I had a
great trouble to steer my vessel. And as I went on the vessel struck a
steeple, and exploded, and I awoke. Whereupon I jumped out of bed, looking
I left him on the beach at 11.30, after he told me this, when he went
home. When he got home he could see seven black crows on the house. Other
people could see the crows, but could not count them. He saw them all
perched head on. He went into the house, and said,
"There is something in these crows, Jane; see them on the roof."
She cried out and ran out and looked, but could not see the seven. After
that he didn't seem to be himself, though there was nothing the matter
with him. A week afterwards, I went out on the Sunday morning after
breakfast, and there was a seat on the beach, and on it sat this man,
Johnny, and another man.
"Why, Johnny, you look very pale," I said.
"Do I?" he said.
"Yes! indeed you do," I replied.
"Well, I don't know, I have had such dreams."
"What will they have been, then?" I asked.
"That I was in a full-rigged ship, with all sails set; I was all alone,
but could see nothing, only seven black crows. I counted them, but my wife
could see nothing, but she could hear something."
That same day, when he went home, he said to his wife:
"Ah, Jane, there is something coming over me," and he fell down dead.