A hawk among the skeletons. Macbeth
out there, the sky a freezing silver scrim,
the trees the bones fall left behind, the death,
the final, stinging death of spring, the grim
white light of ice. The hawk, a sharpened knife
with wings as unforgiving as the snow.
The winter says this is the end of strife—
accounts are closed, in case you didn’t know.
It’s now you see who rules the world outside
your warmth of walls, that bubble of a self
that’s tethered to your myth. You cannot hide
from ancient cold. You can’t be someone else.
The hawk’s the night that breaks through winter sun.
The hardest time, it says, has just begun.
by Ed Hack
Editor’s Note: Evocative imagery sets the scene for this sonnet’s pivot in the last four lines, where life lessons are offered with unequivocal emphasis.