Hawk Roosting

4 Feb

The poem Hawk Roosting by Ted Hughes depicts a narcissistic hawk who often speaks of his superiority. The Hawk is portrayed by the poet in the first person which draws a connection between man and the hawk. The poet continuously gives the hawk human emotions and characteristics while making the hawk appear to be as emotionless as possible. The hawk is portrayed as a ruthless killer simply because that is who he is and what he was created to do. The hawk describes himself as a creation of god and he came from life and now “holds life” in his feet. The hawk explains that there is no sophistry in his body, which means everything is there for a reason and is essentially perfect. This ‘perfection’ of the hawk causes him to come off as rather arrogant and self-centered.

The hawk continues to reinforce his ‘perfection’ and ‘dominance’ through the way he speaks to the reader. He describes himself as calculated when he states “my flight is direct” and “no arguments assert my right” as well as “my eye has permitted no change.” He comes off as precise and calculated with no room for error. This contributes to his belief that there is “no sophistry in my body.” The hawk also asserts his dominance when he states “the convenience of the high trees.” It shows him as higher than the rest and on top of the world. He claims they are “of advantage to me” which shows him as dominant and on top. The hawk’s arrogance and narcissism are easily portrayed in this poem by the poet quite blatantly and simply. The poem is, in essence, a description of the hawk’s personality and expresses his narcissism.

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One Response to “Hawk Roosting”

  1. alicemendeleyeva February 4, 2011 at 12:45 PM #

    You’ve made some good points here, Matt. I like how you actually said that the poem is written in first person and that he also gives the hawk human emotions and characteristics. You also talked about him being perfect, narcissistic, arrogant and dominant.

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