H. L. Hix


Better that any arc he sees confound than that it confirm his protestations.

It swallows all it swallows, mass mistaken for mass,
swallows it all as storm surge swallows swaths of shoreline,
offers for the finding after only slivers of glass,
deflects off weathered edifice, trickles through tumbledown.
Deflects barely, a swallow off the surface of a farm pond.
Even on cold nights, not all brilliance mimics the crystalline.
Not all wisdom waits, not all that winters winters underground.
Unspoken, any summons to silent predation.

Cy Twombly, "Beyond (A System for Passing)"

To say how much I've missed you, I offer this,
at most mist, at least assorted letters, lists,
numbers I insist tell stories. I kissed you
last, Dad, in the casket in which you passed on,
to some next place, but last listened for your voice
last night, these long years after, will listen next
when next oppressed by blue-gray, as I am now,
as I, thus lost, am always by your absence.

Even Be It Built of Boards Planed by Hand and Joined Without Nails, Yet May a Barn Burn

The three men now stood satisfied, arms crossed,
joking among themselves, but only moments before
they hadn’ t been laughing. It had taken all three
to bind the struggling man. First, to limit his movement,
they had duct-taped his wrists together behind his back:
for that, one man had held his legs and another had pinned him,
one hand on each shoulderblade and one knee on his head,
at his left temple, grinding his right cheek and eye into
the dust and straw and dried shit that formed the floor of the barn.