Monday, April 9, 2012

Hawk Passing

hawk


Hawk Passing



I can’t help but wonder what I’ll see
in the last flare
before the fire goes out.

I imagine the waif, the siren, the falconer
displayed in my prism, 
that sepia fata morgana,
with blade between my teeth, dancing
stiff arms extended, slashing away
at whatever angel or devil
has come to fetch me that day
hung on the fluttering
blue wing of the unknown.

One with the Carolina parakeet 
and the Great Auk, the dodo
and the passenger pigeon je me sauve
and sauve qui peut at last, 
transformed in peregrinations
of feathers, kestrel soaring
in my own spirals of raptor desire
impaling passerine phantasms
with immaterial claws

leaving nothing to save
from the acid breath
the blistering heat, the hungering wolf teeth
come to eat me up, bone white
gleaming in the last flare
before the fire goes out.

Hawk Soaring Through Winter Woods

April 2012


Posted for   real toads
Open Link Monday


My eighth poem for the ninth day of April, National Poetry Month. Still behind. I need to write more haiku!


Header Image: hawk, by nats, on flick'r
Footer Image: Hawk Soaring through Winter Woods, by Rachel Ford James , on flick'r
Both shared under a Creative Commons 2.0 Generic license

27 comments:

  1. Well, you are a fighter, for sure! Feathers are flying here, and words too. It is a wonderfully detailed and vivid vision.

    I am a little surprised to confess that I cannot imagine having that much fight in me at the end. But it is wonderful to read about.

    I especially liked all the ornithological specfics, and the sauve qui peut in the third verse. K.

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  2. The caption for that statue photo is so obvious, I won't say it!

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  3. I love this! Especially this section:

    "transformed in peregrinations
    of feathers, kestrel soaring
    in my own spiral of passerine desire
    impaling phantasms
    with immaterial raptor claws"

    You should come link this one to my Monday Melting prompt today; you used some of the words.

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  4. WOW! Your depiction of death is so different from any I have imagined. I must tell you, this piece forced me to ponder my likely-too-romantic notions. Compelling, and thus amazing!

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  5. Oooh peregrinations!! That whole stanza is alive with an incredible array of words. Having begun my comment in the middle, let me say how extraordinary the opening and closing premise is: the sight to be seen before the last fire goes out. Excellent.

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  6. aaaah. for serious, how are you writing one every day when you write like this? i'm impressed.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Marian--and equally serious, it's totally kicking my tail.

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  7. A powerful piece for sure. I love the lines "impaling phantasms
    with immaterial raptor claws." So wonderful!

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  8. brilliant diction here.what a string of powerful, well-chosen words that appeal as much to the mind as to the ear. fascinatingly done.

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  9. this is such a part of living, isn't it? wondering what the end will be like. that you opened the throttle, so to speak, and packed this with huge energy brought me into it fully. reminded me of shakespeare: do not go quietly into that dim night. the wolf's teeth at the end was a flashing surprise. marian is right. you crank with quality.

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  10. eeep...love all the action and movement throughout this hedge...the spinning and slashing with talon...nice dance in that...but yes do beware the wolf...smiles

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  11. I love birds of prey. Enjoyed this. I'll be watching for haiku. ;)

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  12. That first verse is just so compelling, and the answer to its question, mirrored in the same lines in the final stanza, so chilling and yet satisfying in its completion of the circle.

    I have to say, I did the poem-a-day last year, and it totally killed me. I was so exhausted at the end, that I couldn't see myself doing it again so soon. So I take my hat off to you, courageous adventurer, and wish you goodspeed!

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  13. Dear Hedgie: Wonderful shamanic alchemy~! What will happen "before the fire goes out"...from your ruminations; plenty~! Love it~!

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  14. Delicious details of not going gentle into that good night. Specifics are rich in your hand, always. So well crafted.

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  15. Love all the details specially the last stanza...chilling words ~

    And you are participating in the April daily writing? It's a challenge but I know you are up to it, even writing haiku ~

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  16. Wonderfully thick language and fantastic imagining of the instinctual fight to survive. Should the passerines among us be wary?

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    Replies
    1. Only phantasmal ones. ;-) I think most of the ones I'm after are extinct anyway.

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  17. Whatever angel or devil has come to fetch you that day hung on the fluttering blue wing of the unknown?

    Oh stoppittttttttttt, show off!

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  18. "Hung on the fluttering blue wing of the unknown." Being talented enough to write that one line alone should make you proud. Brilliant writing!

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  19. As I was sitting here going through the work of all the lovely Toads I was thinking of quitting and going to bed....but then I came upon this. After reading it, not only can I finish my duly appointed tasks but after that...I believe I will go and start a small land skirmish in Asia. Brave writing, writing that gets the blood pumping, foot on the throat good. "Freeeedddooooooommmmm..." lol.

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  20. Yes, time flies when you're flying, and it soars when you're dying, or loosing the hawk imagination at that one ... the whole poetic catalogue - or the vocation -- I think sums up tidily and ferally well when one is

    transformed in peregrinations
    of feathers, kestrel soaring
    in my own spirals of raptor desire
    impaling passerine phantasms
    with immaterial claws


    It's why I think the old Irish poets and shamans wore singing-cloaks of feathers, symbol of the spirit's wings. What better way to go that mid-flight, pen still in hand, writing down that final, terrible sound? A hundred chickadees will read this and take wing ... - Brendan

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  21. This is a heavy beauty, JoyAnn...do we not wonder these things late at night; or when the bird of prey soars above our head out in nature? As always, the natural world highlights your poetic brilliance. Good luck with the poems (I've already tanked quite well) ~

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  22. "kestrel soaring
    in my own spirals of raptor desire"

    Hell, I may never write again.

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  23. so many great lines in this - your turn of phrase is brilliant; it all builds and moves. I loved the first lines "I can’t help but wonder what I’ll see
    in the last flare
    before the fire goes out." and then the return to that at the close - nicely done!

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  24. slashing at angel or devil... ha! you have such imagery - what a fun scene to paint!

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg