Thursday, September 8, 2011


Both female specters are ancient legends of the paranormal. Similar in nature their stories have haunted two different cultures for generations.


STATE OF TEXAS - A lone walker makes his way along the banks of a river. For him this is a familiar path, one that he navigates each day. Keeping his eyes on the ground, he is disturbed by the one difference between this and all the other times his feet have sought purchase here: this time it is night. Usually the man leaves town much earlier, but tonight he was detained, and as he hurries toward his home he is at least thankful for the full moon lighting his way.

A soft sound comes to his ears, possibly some animal he thinks to himself. Concentration must be reserved for any hazards lying in front of him. Then from the other bank he hears it, a long sobbing wail that ends in a scream. The man stops in his tracks and listens, his ears straining for any sound. Again the voice comes to him, this time just behind him on his side of the bank. In the darkness directly behind him a pitiful, but frightening scream filled with pain and anguish momentarily petrifies him with sudden fear. Another cry that turns into a crazed keening wail resonances along the bank sounding even closer still, this time the man turns and begins to run no longer fearful of any object in his path. He will not stop running until he reaches home. He has heard –her. He has heard the cries of La Llorona.

La Llorona was a young widow with small children to care for, and few means to feed or clothe them. Either out of the desperation of her circumstances, or a desire to start a new life for herself without responsibilities, she drowned her own children in a river. Madness came upon her immediately after her rash act and she spent the rest of her short life following the river along its banks lamenting her lost children.

All these years after her death her lonely cries are still heard along the banks of rivers. No one is sure how old this tale really is, but generation after generation of Texans have heard this story which originated in Mexico. 

IRELAND - This female spirit story is old and can be traced back as far as 1380 with the publication of the Cathreim Thoirdhealbhaigh (Triumps of Torlough) by Seean mac Craith. Her mournful wails are heard foretelling a death in an Irish family. 

Many years ago it was in the wee hours of morning when I was awaken with the faint sound of someone in the house crying. Thinking it was my wife I looked at her lying next to me and found her sound asleep. Still hearing the remorseful sound I eased myself out of the bed so I wouldn't wake her and made my way around the room still listening. The noise was coming from another room in the house. Slowly opening the bed room door and stepping lightly down the hall listening all the while to what sounded like a woman crying. Opening each door as I made my way down the hallway trying to determine the sounds point of origin. Thinking it might be my mother-in-law I peeked into her darken bed room and saw she was sleeping peacefully. With no other females in the house I couldn't understand who it could be wailing with grief. As I walked in the open door of my laundry room the sound seemed to be coming from outside the house. We had some wooden steps on the outside leading to the laundry room door so I though maybe a female neighbor had made her way to my house in the night and was siting on the steps crying. I quietly made my way back to my bed room and got dressed so I could help the poor woman and get her any aid she might need. As I got dressed I could still hear the crying, even all the way back down the hall and out the front door.

I stopped on the front porch to put on my shoes and could hear the woman crying on the side of the house. After a few seconds I was up and making my way in the dark to where the step was resting on the side of the house. The early morning air was cool and dew was on the ground. My shoes were now soaked from the dew and after making it the steps I found no crying woman, but I could still hear her. Thinking she must have heard my approach and moved to the back of the house I made my way to the back to see if she was there. As I walked away from the laundry room door to the back of the house the sound quit. I stopped to listen closely in case she said something or started crying again. Waiting what seemed like 5 minutes in the cool morning air I started to shiver in soaked shoes.

Thinking she must have left I started walking back to the front door when suddenly she starting crying again. Now the sound seemed to be coming from the direction of the pond. Walking down the wet path I stopped half way and yelled, "Hello, can I help you?". The crying stopped and I waited for a reply. Listening intently for a whisper or someone walking or running away from me I found there was  nothing to hear. After waiting for another 5 or 6 minutes I turned back to the house. Almost to the front door I heard the wailing woman again and the sound seemed to be coming from the steps again. I quickly stepped down the porch steps and looked down the side of the house to the other steps leading to the laundry room and didn't see anyone. 

Giving up I returned to the house and decided to go to bed. Someone must be pulling a prank and I wasn't going to play. The next morning I spoke to my mother-in-law and told her of my early morning adventure and asked her if she ever heard the mournful crying woman. To my surprise she told me she had heard the woman many different times and it was alway before a death in the family. 

I can't remember if someone did die soon after I heard the crying woman,  but I'll never forget the sound of the anguish, soulful crying.   

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