Ronald ‘Chalky’ White

a celebration

The Owl

According to Robert Graves in The White Goddess (pp. 210–11) November is the month of the screech owl (the pale, ghost-like barn owl). So now is a good time to post photos of this small stylized ceramic owl, made by Ronald M. White.

Ceramic owl by Ronald M. White

At some point I will post a photo of Ron White’s personal copy of The White Goddess. It is quite an eloquent document, because it has been read, literally, to pieces.

Ceramic owl made by Ronald M. White

In the Welsh legend of Llew Llaw Gyffes, Blodeuwedd is transformed into an owl. Graves identifies the core of the legend as a myth about the sacred king and his relationship with the Goddess. For Graves, the Goddess in her Owl form is the Goddess of Wisdom, and in this connexion he cites the Greek goddess Athena, whose symbol was an owl. The Wisdom goddess, for Graves, is also the Death Goddess, and the owl’s cry is a prophesy of death.

I have no doubt that all these associations were in Ron’s mind when he made this little piece.

On the back of it he put the symbol of the Goddess with her arms raised in blessing that he put on some of his other ceramic pieces: the same symbol that now appears on his grave (see The Symbol on the Gravestones).

Rear view of ceramic owl by Ronald M. White, showing his potter's mark

November 11, 2009 Posted by | Chalky White | Leave a comment