Monday, February 20, 2012


Image: Sharp-shinned hawk by John James Audubon

How does last night's fall snow
feel about the morning sun's radiant touch?

Is there a deep yearning to be melted,
or is there a great fear of death?

I whisper:

"They can be one, the same."

The sharp-shinned hawk throws himself,
like Cupid's hell-bent arrow,
head on into the bough-damp cedars.

He has faith in a universal memory
that has never occupied him personally.

"There will be nourishment at the core of
this dark and tangled thicket."

And he is correct,

Emerging with brown, flopped-necked sparrow
in his blood-warmed talons.

He makes no apology for taking a life
to secure his own,

But he does pull each of the sparrow's feathers
and sends them fluttering free into the blue of sky
as his particular way
of making an offering to the Holy.

And is this what it's all about? I wonder:

Every act of life, a sacrament.

(c) 2012-2014/Jamie K. Reaser
Published in "Sacred Reciprocity: Courting the Beloved in Everyday Life" and "Wild Life: New and Selected Poems"  ( 

(Feel free to share. Poetry is meant to move.)


  1. Magnificent, Jamie, overall. It's worth noting (as a Plath groupie since the early 80s) that the lines beginnining "The sharp-shinned hawk throws himself/like Cupid's hell-bent arrow/head on in to the bough-damp cedars." . . . I find to have a Plathian influence. I don't mean to be some kind of elitist lit. crit. person. Those lines carry a heavy downbeat, like some of Plath's poems. So beautiful this is.

    1. Thanks Mickey! Now I'm off to Google Plath poems. ;)