"The Thought Fox" was first published in the British poet Ted Hughes's debut collection, The Hawk in the Rain, in 1957. One of Hughes's most popular poems, "The Thought Fox" is about creativity, inspiration, and the process of writing poetry. The speaker, generally taken to be Hughes himself (or a version of him), sits alone during the dark quiet of a winter night, fingers poised over a blank page. A fox appears outside the window and makes a tentative but purposeful journey across the snow, before leaping and into the speaker's mind—at which point the "page is printed," and the poem is complete. This "thought fox" can be thought of as a metaphor for inspiration and creative thought, which seem to come from a mysterious place separate from the speaker's conscious mind. The poem treats the fox in mostly literal terms, however, and in doing so proves the power of poetry to bring new worlds—and creatures—to vivid life on the page.