Howling Under Bridges
Our favorite places to howl
Howling is a Prayer of Thanks to the Earth
My daughter loves howling as she walks under bridges, intrigued by the echoes that sing back to her. She stops walking for a moment, howls, and then listens for the echo, which is often magnified by the water of the Muddy River running beside us. I howl along with her, and often our howling matches don't end right after we've walked out from under the bridge, to meander underneath the canopy of leafy tree branches above the greenway path we love to explore. Sometimes people walking on the other side of the river howl along with us, and we wave to each other as we match howl for howl: "Ow-ow-owooooooo!"
How to Howl like a Wolf
- Shaun Ellis teaching a wolf cub to howl - YouTube
Shaun Ellis (aka the Wolfman) lives with wolves by bringing them up from cubs after their mother rejects them, and teaches them how to be wolves
- Difference Between Coyote and Wolf | Difference Between | Coyote vs Wolf
Coyote vs Wolf. A coyote looks like a wolf, but in fact both wolves and coyotes have many differences between them.
Reaching Out to Others with a Howl ~
As described above, those who might begin as strangers have made a connection to one another through the expressiveness of howling. This demonstrates the inherent purpose of howling - to communicate. Wolves and other wild canine creatures that howl do so in order to communicate with others in their pack. They tell each other where to find prey, or where to meet after a hunt. Sometimes they howl for the pure need for expression - deeply primal expression. They are responding to the energy of the earth, especially when the moon is full and affects the magnetic pull on the tides. Perhaps it is a prayer that they offer in their howling, thanking nature for providing for their needs.
Join a wolf in the wild...
Bridging our Divergent Natures ~
Humans find it fun to greet each other in such a primal fashion, and the impetus to respond in kind is natural. Joining in the sound, and in the fun of making it, is a very human response. It is a break from all of the formal civility that is expected of us in our societal relations. Our animal nature grows weary of the restraints put upon it by our rules for social interaction with one another. It often demands expression, and at the same time we let that happen we explore our spiritual connection to each other, and to the animal kingdom.
The Science of Howling
My daughter and I keep howling because once we've begun, it is often challenging to stop. It's a fun thing to do, and easy to do together. Like a mother wolf teaches her pups to howl, I have taught my daughter "pup" to howl, so that we can do so as a form of play with one another. It is a great way to explore the science of sound with young people: vocal language, types of spaces conducive to echoes, and the sound conductivity of water. It is definitely a great exercise for home-schooling parents to do with their young children.
The Art of Howling
There are so many things one can howl about, and it can be done with lots of different attitudes - bold, meek, romantic, etc...Day or night...full moon or new. Any time is a great time to howl, especially where it can be magnified and travel back to you, and others can join in. Howling under bridges is a good place to start, but caves are also a good place to howl. Howling to friends and family around the house could be a way to pass a rainy day.
Howling to familiar simple tunes is a fun type of music to make. Howling someone's name could be a worthy challenge to tackle. Howling alone and howling with friends are equally entertaining, for each brings its own type of satisfaction.
No matter how you do it, happy howling to you!
© 2011 Karen A Szklany