Legible Heavens

Legible Heavens

by H. L. Hix
     
 

“Untroubled authority . . . and the talent to make us weep.”—Dan Chiasson, Poetry

“He has written the most important poetic sequences published by an American poet during the last several decades. He is the most interesting American poet writing today, the least predictable and the most challenging.”—David Caplan,

Overview

“Untroubled authority . . . and the talent to make us weep.”—Dan Chiasson, Poetry

“He has written the most important poetic sequences published by an American poet during the last several decades. He is the most interesting American poet writing today, the least predictable and the most challenging.”—David Caplan, Pleiades

Legible Heavens explores what the most intimate forms of experience reveal about our most cosmic concerns. Its four sequences act like compass points to orient a human landscape.

The author of numerous books of poetry, criticism, and essay, H. L. Hix teaches at the University of Wyoming. His Chromatic was a finalist for the National Book Award.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

The latest from the prolific and ferociously intelligent Hix (Chromatic) again offers long sequences, complicated allusions to older works and a tumultuous focus on sexual love. The long, breathless lines and run-on sentences all over "Star Chart for the Rainy Season" show the poet's wild self-reproach, prompted perhaps by the end of an affair or a marriage: "I regret nothing having done nothing worth regret nothing reckless ever/ having realized so little of my will." The much longer "All the One-Eyed Boys in Town" strings together sonnet-sized units, each built around a small quote from another (usually contemporary) long poem (John Ashbery, Jim Harrison and Anne Carson all turn up), focused again on sexual love: "While the victims freed themselves/ from birds and their absences,/ my body learned that the tips/ of your fingers regulate/ hurricanes." Hix grows more vivid, and easier to follow, in the third set, a 12-page tour de force of one-sentence poems (each beginning "If..." and including a "then" or "thus") juxtaposing erotic longing with the satisfaction in the visible world: "wonder of sliced apple/ fed to me, dreamed storms, grass wet when I wake." A quieter, concluding sequence about the life of Jesus offers fewer surprises, but may not weaken the overall force of this strange and fierce writer's seventh collection. (Nov.)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780979745041
Publisher:
Etruscan Press
Publication date:
11/01/2008
Pages:
90
Product dimensions:
6.08(w) x 8.96(h) x 0.33(d)
Age Range:
16 Years

Meet the Author

H. L. Hix teaches in and directs the creative writing MFA at the University of Wyoming. In addition to his books from Etruscan, he has published a number of other books of poetry, poetry in translation, and criticism. His poetry has been recognized with the Grolier Prize, the T. S. Eliot Prize, and the Peregrine Smith Award.

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