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Chris Edgar




In the margins of the fairway
A second-story man seeks the dark fantastic
That lurks within the contemplative life,
Rebounding with the strength of twelve men
To cajole the five iron to new highs.
Once the procession of the equinoxes
Comes back down to earth, jarring
The insane root that holds sway
In the minds of many, the autumn foliage
Sees you in the rough,
At sixes and sevens in the bright
If cloud-studded New England day.
This is no two-man show
Whose rich dualism cannot be missed—
An entire fleet of people are counting
On you to deliver the emotional Velcro,
A human thunderclap to shake the trees.
A vertigo in which the buzz is all around,
Reaching the dogleg, one must field
Many tough questions, the paranormal romance
Only ends to begin again, as it is the rotation
Of the ball that matters, the lip meeting the hook,
Hitting the ground to jog past the bean counters
Before fading to the left, relax the hips and shoulders,
Stop and breathe a moment,
This buzzard is a turkey shoot,
No thoughts of negative capability here
Or you may shank everything.
Instead, learn to be instrumental in the process,
Read the waters one at a time,
The bird is in your hand, think wood.



If we had only known what we know now
Things might have turned out differently,
But then again who knew the message
Was Sicilian in origin,
That they would sell the bear’s skin
Before he was comfortable in it,
Or that the minister would come back
From vacation determined to recover
His lost credibility
In one last-ditch effort
To breathe new life
Into the ancient canard.
In that moment,
In which nothing seemed to change,
As fortune had it,
The cows were lying down in the field.

To visit the old chateau, kindly remain zen.
Grass makes the heart grow fonder.

Here at the institute we burn the candle at both ends
Because for some men, nothing is written;
Because prevailing wisdom tends to falter over water;
And sometimes the mind wanders,
And sometimes simply just because.

Misguided perhaps, I stayed in that station hotel
Many months believing as I did that I would
Never amount to much. Not knowing me then
As you do now, you never would have
Booked us passage on that packet boat,
Had it not been for the blessed missing variable.
A shadow of my former self,
You took me for one heck of guy.
The penny dropped, but turned up roses.
I owe you one for that, maybe everything.



The spreading lake and the low hills lent the chessman a noble oaken calm in their conical hats, and with it a sensibility of division wherein the winding river and the light paths disappeared into the trees, seemingly breathing in the generous darkness. Sea to land, night to sky, eye to hand, dog to cat—a calm of self-sufficiency blunting the contrasts, conspiring against those outward forms formerly aspired to, rendering the horses’ hooves into straight grooves.

Utterly lacking in charm, his mien was remarkably casual for someone in his shoes.

Evening comes far more swiftly in the tropics than in the Mid-Atlantic states. In heated debate much of the great equation of facts may be lost or forgotten. One or two fingers extend as if the whole hand is about to enter into argument. Such is the life of one hand; the other daydreams alone in a maze lined with fine Corinthian leather, bleached and cracked by the equatorial sun.

At the sound of the bell, all mad cons went south.

In lieu of coin, a usurer offers a small phial to two young newlyweds. The mountebank, clad in red, is blurred in the double mirror, in which from a distance he appears as a school of apples plying the waters. In the phial, the Dark Ages lie sleeping. As the mirage fades and the music begins, our two newlyweds glean that this is no ordinary hunt.

Maybe I was more able then than I am now, if I understand your question correctly.

As the saying goes, one man’s mickle is another man’s muckle. And so it goes. The tranquil hamlet of Purview, whose neighbor is Hindsight, sleeps through the night even as the time of doves nears. But who can or will say, as a car drives by in the night rain, what might occur or may go unnoticed?

Mid-life obesity has its risks, particularly if you are light in your loafers.

The lack of tension was palpable, but on the forest floor photosynthesis as in fact occurring, as was spontaneous generation, however minute and often invisible to the human eye. Meanwhile, in Venice, blue held the east as nature tended to express itself in sky. The sinking sun, buckling under the rigors of life, knelt before the impending storm, which punctuated the drama with an affirmation of youth and the stimulus of lightning. The unique thing she possessed was a sense of grace foreign to others.

CHRIS EDGAR is the author of the collection At Port Royal (Adventures in Poetry, 2003), and was formerly Publications Director of Teachers & Writers Collaborative in New York. Since February 2006, he has been a resident of Geneva, Switzerland.

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With Elaine Lustig Cohen - Preamble to the Universal Declaration

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