My Nightingale by Regina Gibson

I wrote this poem about my daughter years before I was saved. Then I thought it was about Jesus. I decided to look up the christian symbolism of the nightingale and came across this:

The nightingale, with its evening song, is the bird of love, sheltering secret lovers from prying eyes.

Because it sings all night long, the nightingale was once thought to not sleep at all. One legend tells of a reluctant shepherdess who kept postponing her wedding date. This caused her fiancée so many sleepless nights that he finally turned her into a nightingale, condemning her to a life with no sleep.

  • A folktale tells that if a nightingale’s eyes and heart are hidden in a drink, the one who drinks them will die of sleeplessness.
  • The nightingale’s song is cherished around the world and considered to be a good omen for poets, writers, and singers. Eating the nightingale’s heart was once thought to inspire talent in artists.
  • Nightingales teach their offspring to sing and so are often symbols of education and good teaching.
  • Christians once considered the nightingale’s song to be the cries of lost souls trapped in purgatory. These souls were expressing their longing for heaven.
  • Early Christians, noting that the bird sang with increasing joy as dawn approached, made the nightingale a symbol of the righteous Christian soul, singing in anticipation of the arrival of Christ.
  • St. Bonaventure believed the nightingale’s last song (similar to the fabled last song of the swan) was always its most joyful and most beautiful. According to the Saint, the nightingale sang with greatest happiness as it looked forward to its final release from this earthly life. The nightingale was believed to die during the ninth hour of the day (three o’clock in the afternoon), the same time as Christ’s death on the cross.
  • The nightingale is the bird of the month of May.

From this site:

I decided to further my research on the last topic Swan Song and found this, which is very errie to me.

In Shakespeare‘s The Merchant of Venice, Portia exclaims “Let music sound while he doth make his choice; Then, if he lose, he makes a swan-like end, Fading in music.”[10]

The well-known Orlando Gibbons madrigalThe Silver Swan” states the legend thus:


The silver Swan, who living had no Note,
when Death approached, unlocked her silent throat.
Leaning her breast against the reedy shore,
thus sang her first and last, and sang no more:
“Farewell, all joys! O Death, come close mine eyes!
“More Geese than Swans now live, more Fools than Wise.”

This reference is from

With all this in mind here is my poem.     My Nightingale

My nightingale sings to me in the still of the night.

She whispers sweet dreams til the morning light.

When I awake and walk through my day,

she’s holding my hand along the way.

She brings me comfort, peace and joy

and when life gets tough she tells me it’s okay.

When the day turns to night my nightingale sings to me

in the still of the night.



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