Hawk and Shadow

I watched a hawk
glide low across the hill,
her own dark shape
in her talons like a kill.

She tilted her wings,
fell into the air –
the shadow coursed on
without her, like a hare.

Being out of sorts
with my so-called soul,
part unhooked hawk.
part shadow on parole,

I played fast and loose:
keeping one in sight
while forsaking the other.
The hawk gained height:

her mate on the ground
began to fade,
till hill and sky were empty,
and I was afraid.

from The Overhaul (Picador, 2012), Kathleen Jamie 2012, used by permission of the author and Macmillan Publishers

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