The hare

A quadrille for dverse.

The hare

At the meadow’s edge I saw, where
the trees make shadows green,
pressed in the grass a form, hare
left showed where he had been.

The morning quiet’s broken,
by gunshot, eager sounds
of hunters’ sharp words spoken
and the belling of their hounds.

and the whole poem.

The hare

At the meadow’s edge I saw, where
the trees make shadows green,
pressed in the grass a form, hare
left showed where he had been.

The morning quiet’s broken,
by gunshot, eager sounds
of hunters’ sharp words spoken
and the belling of their hounds.

Are they looking for the wild thing
that rested by the hedge,
where the blackbirds and the thrush sing,
and the breeze sighs in the sedge?

Will they take the deer path, follow
tracks lost in the tangled trees,
or will they find the grassy hollow
where my hare rests? Hide him, please!

I hear the hounds’ wild crying,
voices urging, find the prey,
a russet flash, hooves flying,
of the deer that got away.

When silence falls, jay keeping
watch calls out in thankful praise;
somewhere a hare is sleeping
beneath the Good Ones’ watchful gaze.

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

38 thoughts on “The hare”

  1. I do love a hare poem, Jane, and a quadrille to boot! Yours reminds of a hare I saw a couple of months ago. I especially love that the trees made shadows green, and the hare left his shape in the grass. But oh, the gunshot and the belling of the hounds make me so angry!

  2. I like the light and life of the first stanza and how it contrasts with the chaos and death of the second. I’m guessing you wish you had a place to give sanctuary to the hare.

      1. If they’re after something that will fight back like boar or red deer they go out in big numbers taking no chances. The little things like hares they pop off at all the time.

      1. Perhaps the problem is, when you start to write a poem, you don’t know how long it’s going to be. The number of lines sometimes, depending on the form, but the number of words fits into the other limits of the form, they’re not the form itself.

  3. The beauty of the beginning –I love the hare’s shape left in the grass–and the horror of the end is such a contrast. That hare is beautiful.
    I don’t think we have hares here. We had lots of rabbits about this summer, but they’ve vanished (maybe to hawks), but I never see them in the winter.

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