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Friday, February 24, 2012

Poetry Friday--"Hawk's Shadow"

Hawk's Shadow
by Louise Glück

Embracing in the road
for some reason I no longer remember
and then drawing apart, seeing
a shape ahead--how close was it?
We looked up to where the hawk
hovered with its kill; I watched them
veering toward West Hill, casting
their one shadow in the dirt, the all-inclusive
shape of the predator--
Then they disappeared. And I thought,
one shadow. Like the one we made,
you holding me.

from Louise Glück: The First Four Books of Poems [811 GLU]
How do you interpret this? Is she inferring that her lover's affection had a toxic power--that her love was ultimately killed? Or, was their mutual love so strong that as a couple it was hard to distinguish one individual from another--just as the shape of the shadow was "all-inclusive"? Or something else altogether?

Don't ponder it for too long, you'll want to head over to Check It Out where you're sure to find more thought-provoking poetry.

Photo by Wouter de Bruijn.


  1. Ooh...love in the shadow of hovering hawks. I saw the poet seeking comfort in that embrace, but a second reading made me think not. But, that's the joy of poetry - every reading brings a new interpretation.

  2. Interesting question! She doesn't seem unhappy with her lover in the poem, but it seems like ominous foreshadowing at the very least!