Billy Hathorn, "Walnut Springs Park, Seguin, TX," 2013
The weight of the container itself should be considered. If this were a sonnet rather than its thin ghost, a tare scale would feel the form press down as heavily as if I’d put a thumb on the pan. But the container here is light, its line breaks untied, ragged; the poem evaporates a bit while I try to get an accurate read. It makes shifts in tare inevitable, makes it impossible to get any reliable measure. But that’s fine—the mockingbird's a featherweight tare compared to the weight of its song pressing on my heart; the sedge around a stock pond is a tare of no account compared to those carp swirling gold in its cloudy water, a pirate’s treasure drifting Brownian above the soft mud. No adjustments will be made to our tare scale; this light, those fish, that birdsong, can’t be contained, in fact.