Last night, I had a great idea for a tattoo, or even just a drawing/painting. It just came to me and I loved it. I saw in my mind’s eye a human skull with a heart (symbol) in its mouth dripping one or three droplets of blood. The skull was flanked by barn owl wings. Yes, it is a bit dark and shadowy but when I saw the image it seemed right (for exactly what I am not sure). Off the top of my head, the symbols mean (to me):
Skull: thought, memory, the intellect, death, journey to the underworld, the ancestors/dead, deities associated with various types of death mysteries (which is every single deity that I work with!)
Barn Owl Wings: fylgja/fetch, wisdom, insight, transitions, transformation, psychic abilities, trance, journeying Yggdrasil, journey to the upperworld (the wings themselves)
Heart: life, love, soul, emotion, passion, strength, courage
Blood: living, heritage, healing wounds (blood as both the sign of a wound and the start of its healing)
The Heart held in the Skull’s mouth may symbolize the joining of heart and mind, lifted on the wings of spirit. The blood could be evidence of battles fought and won or those still to come, a kind of promise that life will land a few blows but that healing is always possible. I like that symbolism for both life and death, mind and emotion, wounds and healing are contained in the image.