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Hughes, Ted - Crow - When the eagle soared clear

Identifier

000100

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

 

Written at the time when his relationship with Sylvia Plath was at its lowest ebb and she committed suicide – see the main description of his life.

The poem is an allegory about all sorts of birds and their symbolic meaning.  It also shows the correlation between people and birds – birds as people.

 

 

 

 

A description of the experience

Ted Hughes - Crow

When the eagle soared clear through a dawn distilling of emerald
When the curlew trawled in seadusk through a chime of wineglasses
When the swallow swooped through a woman’s song in a cavern
And the swift flicked through the breath of a violet

When the owl sailed clear of tomorrow’s conscience
And the sparrow preened himself of yesterday’s promise
And the heron laboured clear of Bessemer’s upglare
And the blue tit zipped clear of lace panties
And the woodpecker drummed clear of the rotovator and the rose farm
And the pewit tumbled clear of the Laundromat

While the bullfinch plumped in the apple bud
And the goldfinch bulbed in the sun
And the wryneck crooked in the moon
And the dipper peered from the dewball

Crow spraddled head down in the beach garbage
Guzzling a dropped ice cream.

The source of the experience

Hughes, Ted

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Symbols

Bird
Crow
Eagle

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Overloads

Angst
Psychological trauma

Commonsteps

References

Ted Hughes – Crow [illustrated edition]