“Some people get all worried about this fantasy and reality thing, you know, the stage only being the fantasy. I don’t see it like that. It makes things easier if you treat the stage as reality. Reality is doing the thing you’re best at.”
Oweynagat, also called “The Cave of Cats” is a kistvaen which serves as a
portal to the Otherworld in Irish folklore and from which various destructive
creatures emerge during Samhain (pronounced SAH-win, the Gaelic festival
marking the end of the summer harvest season and one of the progenitors to our
modern celebrations of Halloween). It is located at Rathcroghan, a complex of
archaeological sites in Ireland and typically just called the Cruachan.
One such creature is the Ellen
Trechen, some kind of 3-headed monster that supposedly rampaged across the
country and was killed by Irish mythological hero Amergin. Other creatures
include flocks of small red birds that wither every plant they touch, and a
herd of pigs with similar powers.
Though perhaps the most famous
creature is The Morrigan (also known as Morrigu, or “the Phantom Queen”). It’s
unclear on what exactly she is, but
often times she’s believed to be a manifestation of the Gaelic goddess of the
Earth and Sovereignty. Other times she’s one third of a triumvirate of beings
that are both three individuals and one whole. In most cases though, she’s
simply an omen of doom and death, particularly in battle, and often appears as
a crow, with one singular exception. On Samhain she emerges from the Oweynagat
in a flaming chariot pulled by a one-legged chestnut-coloured horse and a
company of creatures, often the kinds already mentioned above.