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Hunters In The Snow

Slowly, the hunters break stride through the snow,
Hunched over in failure, their heads hung low.
Below the hill where villagers at play,
Will soon be sad with no food on the way.

The meagre kill slung across one’s shoulders,
Barely enough, let alone for others.
But there at the inn a boar on the spit,
Pork and ale for those who can pay for it.

Five ravens meet the depressed procession,
And one flies away in food exploration.
While four perched in the trees caw incessantly,
As if to mock the returning party.

Yonder mountains rise with icy cap peaks,
Where at the cliff’s base a castle is seen.
Across the dam an ox-drawn cart lumbers,
While men on ladders douse a chimney fire.

Off in the distance, a tranquil scene reveals
A village with its clock and a church steeple.
All around the town are fields covered with snow,
And below the troop, the mill pond froze over.

Everything looks cold ‘neath a green-tinged sky,
That signals a storm gathering be nigh.
There on the bridge a hag totes a faggot,
Fuel for the stove to keep herself toasty.

The hounds look unnaturally thin and worn,
And like their masters, hopelessly forlorn.
Back from the hunt and home from the forest,
Hunters and dogs are badly in need of rest.

About this poem

Ekphrastic poem based on the painting by Pieter Brueghel the Elder, “Hunters In The Snow" (1565).

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Written on January 21, 2020

Submitted by Denny747 on January 15, 2022

Modified by Denny747

1:16 min read

Dennis Spilchuk

Canadian poet residing in Dryden, Northwestern Ontario. more…

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    "Hunters In The Snow" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 20 May 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/117741/hunters-in-the-snow>.

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