Blue Jay Symbolism

Symbolism of Blue Jay in Literature

Blue jay, as symbolism in literature, is considered a sacred bird in popular culture. Blue jays are native to the American continent, especially the Eastern United States and Southern Canada, making them prominent birds in literature, folk tales, and art. The birds are known for their beauty as well as noise, hyper energy, and spirit, alluding to tricksters. Additionally, blue jays symbolize intelligence, adjustability, and courage in North American and Celtic traditions. The word ‘blue jay’ or ‘bluejay’ is a phrase and not a single word. The word ‘jay’ is derived from the old French word ‘gai’ and the Latin word ‘gaius’, which means a harsh echo of a bird that is similar to a warning cry.


Blue jays are a symbol of confidence, clarity, vibrancy, and intelligence due to their strength and protectiveness.  blue ay symbolizes confidence which is characteristic of the bird in pop culture. blue jays have superior confidence in their abilities. The blue jays also represent confidence, to find a person’s inner optimism, and be honest, strong, and clear in daily life. In western culture, blue jay also represents confidence because it is believed that they are guardian angels who give them courage.


Blue jay symbolizes adaptability.  In native American culture, the Chinookan tribe Blue Jay symbolizes adaptability. According to ancient Greek culture, the God Mercury is a symbol of adaptability as he can blend in any situation as a god of tricksters and travelers as well as merchants who are required to adapt in various situations.


Blue jay symbolizes dreams. In Native American culture, they also considered blue jay as greater Spiritual guidance for communication. Shamans believe Dreaming about that blue jay is a symbol of change in real life or a warning to be prepared for a new change. Dreaming about a single blue jay represents caution to him or her and being vigilant of the people around them. If a person dreams about  The group of blue jay, it symbolizes bad luck coming or a warning of something bad. Dreaming of being chased by a blue jay is a symbol of fear, especially speaking. In African culture, Dreaming of blue jay symbolizes strength and courage. Hindus believe the dream of a blue jay in a dream can bring wealth.


Blue jays are a symbol of survival, As they are extremely skillful. In pop culture, blue jay represents survival because they are known to adapt easily to any condition and have a good survival mechanism. Blue jays are a symbol of survival as they fiercely protect their family.


A blue jay as a symbol of intelligence in pop culture is considered for its strong sense of determination and a very good level of ability to survive. A blue jay’s feather with a white tip represents honesty and purity and while the bird symbolizes intelligence in eastern and western culture. The Native American Tribes, Coast Salish and Sioux, considered blue jays as clever birds similar to ravens and coyotes, symbolizing intelligence and trickster energy.


The blue jay is a symbol of courage, In Christianity. according to the Bible, blue jay represents strength to achieve his or her goal to progress in life. In pop culture, Blue jays also symbolize courage as they are brave fighters. In Hinduism, the Blue color represents the throat chakra based on the blue jay. hence blue jay is also a symbol of courage in yoga practices representing one of the fifth energies associated with spirituality.


Blue Jays are considered messengers of God in Christianity, and they also believe blue jays are messengers of good luck and good fortune. Ancient cultures, such as Aborigines, Egyptians, Celts, and Native Americans, believed that blue jay’s feathers carried local tales, mystical meanings, and magic. Especially in the Celtic tradition, blue jays symbolize messengers, as they have the ability to travel between spirit realms in their hidden form. Hence, the indigenous cultures’ blue jay’s feathers wore feathers on their heads to symbolize their connection with God. According to Japanese culture, the Blue Jays are believed to bring messages from ancestors who have passed away.


In North America, the blue jay symbolizes love as well as guardian and is believed to carry the message of love from their dead relatives. St. Francis of Assisi, a catholic saint church priest, used blue ay as a symbol of love for his teaching. In Celtic culture, Irish, Welsh, Scottish, Breton, and Cornish blue jay symbolizes love and is often used in their folklore. According to Native American culture, blue jay feathers are powerful talismans representing power, protection, and love. In Hindu mythology, blue jay gives its melodious voice to the princess with a harsh voice. Thus, it symbolizes love and sacrifice. In Christianity, as per the Bible, the blue jay is considered a symbol of love shown by god for his creation.

Good luck

A blue jay is a symbol of good luck in pop culture. Native Americans believe that blue jay is a messenger from the spirit guide who brings good luck. However, the Sioux tribe symbolized blue jay as bad luck that can bring death. According to Christianity, blue jay represents good luck and relates to guardian angels. The Celtic culture believes blue jays can bring prosperity and wealth, symbolizing good luck.

Examples of Blue Jay as Symbolism in Literature

Example #1

Dream: Bluejay or Archeopteryx By Margaret Atwood

kneeling on rock
by lakeside, sun
in the sky and also in
the water, that other
self of mine also
kneeling on rock
on the seared bushes the hard
berries squeezed out from
stem ends in spite of
the red needles crackling
on the ground, the sand, among
the root, firedry
my four hands gathering
in either world, the berries
in the dish glowed blue
a bird
lit on both branches
his beak split / his tin
scream forked in the air
warning. above me
against the sun I saw
his lizard eye
down. Gone
in the water
under my shadow
there was an outline, man
surfacing, his body sheathed
in feathers, his teeth
glinting like nails, fierce god
head crested with blue flame

The above example mentions the blue jay’s moving and noise and the excitement it feels in the wild. Here, the blue jay is a symbol of happiness, speed, and adventure.

Example #2

The Bluejay and the Linden Tree By William Robert Moses

Waving blue feathers in slow waving flight
Bear he jay into the waving fraction
Of green May that is the leafing linden.
He sits on a bough, and without action

External in bird or bough, harmony
Of the parts of the rushing universe
Exits: of the thin, life-making liquid
Red in the bird’s veins flowing its fast course,

And whitely seeping through the limb’s fibres.
Shall we infer this harmony inspires
Reciprocal content in the sharp bird
That pecks no tender leaf, nor young bark tears,

And the thrusting tree that does not shake down
From its live twigs the dead-twig bluejay nest?

In the above poem, the poet describes the process of a blue jay’s building a nest on a linden tree, and despite its bright blue feather, it still bleeds red when it gets hurts. The blue jay and the tree are strong and yet connected with nature. Here blue jay symbolizes courage and resilience.

Example #3

On the Move By Thom Gunn

The blue jay scuffling in the bushes follows
Some hidden purpose, and the gust of birds
That spurts across the field, the wheeling swallows,
Has nested in the trees and undergrowth.
Seeking their instinct, or their poise, or both,
One moves with an uncertain violence
Under the dust thrown by a baffled sense
Or the dull thunder of approximate words.

In the above example, the blue jays are shown trying to overcome living in the wild, using their instinct to survive. Here blue jays are symbols of strength and resilience.

Example #4

Final Autumn By Annie Finch

Maple leaves turn black in the courtyard.
Light drives lower and one bluejay crams
our cold memories out past the sun,

each time your traces come past the shadows
and visit under my looking-glass fingers
that lift and block out the sun.

In this poem, the poet is reminded of a past event after watching and hearing a blue jay in their garden. Here the blue jay represents memories and hope.

Example #5

The Blue Jay’s Dance: A Birth Year By Louise Erdrich

“So what is wild? What is wilderness? What are dreams but an internal wilderness and what is desire but a wildness of the soul?”

The author describes blue jay’s life in the wilderness but compares it to the journey of a person’s soul. Here, the blue jay is a symbol of hope, resilience, and journey.

Example #6

Crooked Letter By Tom Franklin

“…in the woods, if you stopped, if you grew still, you’d hear a whole new set of sounds, wind rasping through silhouetted leaves and the cries and chatter of blue jays and brown thrashers and redbirds and sparrows, the calling of crows and hawks, squirrels barking, frogs burping, the far braying of dogs, armadillos snorkeling through dead leaves…”

In this example, blue jays’ presence among other birds in the garden brings comfort to the speaker. Here blue jays symbolize freedom, solitude, and happiness.

Example #7

To Kill a Mockingbird By Harper Lee

Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.

One of the most read books uses mockingbirds as a metaphor for people who have suffered racism and blue jays to criminals like Maycomb. Hence, in this example, blue jays are symbols of villains or racists.