Cold Spell

The April sun is silver, fat white snowflakes
gliding slow as drowning flowers down that light.
Windless, the cherry tree’s explosion of blossom
holds the landscape staunched, stunned, stretched
as held breath, a quietening, a muffled promising,
promising.

The tree is old, huge. On one high branch
a hawk sits veiled in pale bloom, the whole scene
more like moonlight or a dream than any
mid-morning solidity, the pink-emblazoned cherry
calling down slow flakes and the raptor
frozen into grace.

Then broad wings lift, unfolding annunciation
above the sudden cardinal on white ground. Then
a spasm of bloody feathers and the world
shuddering into life.

Betty Adcock

Betty Adcock

Betty Adcock is the author of seven books of poetry, most recently Rough Fugue (LSU, 2017), and the recipient of two Pushcart Prizes, the Poets’ Prize, the North Carolina Medal for Literature, the Texas Institute of Letters Prize for Poetry, the Hanes Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. She taught for twenty years at Meredith College and for ten years at the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers.
Betty Adcock

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Author: Betty Adcock

Betty Adcock is the author of seven books of poetry, most recently Rough Fugue (LSU, 2017), and the recipient of two Pushcart Prizes, the Poets’ Prize, the North Carolina Medal for Literature, the Texas Institute of Letters Prize for Poetry, the Hanes Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. She taught for twenty years at Meredith College and for ten years at the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers.