"Hawk Roosting" by Ted Hughes is a poem consisting of six four-line stanzas. It is written in free verse and has no regular rhyme pattern. It is written in the first person from the point of view of a hawk.
The hawk character, like many of Hughes' animals, is part of a pantheistic world in which nature, despite its violence and cruelty, possesses a sort of visceral honesty and authenticity. Living is a ceaseless struggle, but the violence of the animals is innocent rather than corrupt, unlike human wars. The hawk reflects:
There is no sophistry in my body:
My manners are tearing off heads -
There is no real narrative arc to the poem, merely the reflections of the hawk as he perches high up in a tree overlooking the world which he regards as his domain. The hawk has almost a god's point of view, seeing the world as subject to his whim and himself as the arbiter of life and death. When he is awake, he perches, soars, and kills, and when asleep dreams of killing and eating.