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Robinson Jeffers - Vulture

I had walked since dawn and lay down to rest on a bare hillside
Above the ocean. I saw through half-shut eyelids a vulture wheeling
     high up in heaven,
And presently it passed again, but lower and nearer, its orbit
     I understood then
That I was under inspection. I lay death-still and heard the flight-
Whistle above me and make their circle and come nearer.
I could see the naked red head between the great wings
Bear downward staring. I said, "My dear bird, we are wasting time
These old bones will still work; they are not for you." But how
     he looked, gliding down
On those great sails; how beautiful he looked, veering away in the
     over the precipice. I tell you solemnly
That I was sorry to have disappointed him. To be eaten by that beak
     become part of him, to share those wings and those eyes--
What a sublime end of one's body, what and enskyment; what a life
     after death.

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Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 8413 times | Comments and analysis of Vulture by Robinson Jeffers Comments (2)

Vulture - Comments and Information

Poet: Robinson Jeffers
Poem: Vulture
Year: Published/Written in 1963

Comment 2 of 2, added on May 6th, 2011 at 1:20 PM.


chloe from United Kingdom
Comment 1 of 2, added on June 18th, 2008 at 2:22 AM.

what an "enskyment" - what a great word. Thank you Mr. Jeffers.


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