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Twister


A reeling blank propped up against
The stretched and livid backdrop of the sky,
It rips, black and top-heavy, through the fenced
And farmstead-mottled plain a path,
This turbine two miles high
Of empty energy
And aftermath,
Debris

Sucked spinning through its hollow core
And flung around a giant centrifuge,
Uprooted trunks and branches, a barn door,
A roof the spooling pressures force
To orbit in a huge
And planetary sweep,
The odd doomed horse
Or sheep.

A planetary sweep. And so,
Our planet rides the empty gale of space
Around the solar system, which with slow
Aeonian rotation runs
The light years round, to chase
The vast galactic storm
Billions of suns
Perform.

And whirling at the galaxy's
Crushed hub, they say, a vortex, a black hole
Is hauling light in, stardust, the degrees
Of Kelvin, spacetime and dark matter,
Beyond the last control
The laws of physics sought,
To tear and shatter,
And make nought.

And so the world. And so the mind
Coils in the gyre of its own consciousness,
Touching on matter to drag up and wind
Around itself (or wind around
The infinite recess
It keeps dissolving in
And is not found).
Here spin

The scene, the utterance, the face,
The sequence, dates you strive to reconcile,
Emotions you unfold, feel and replace,
Midnight obsessions you defer
To your enigma file
And hope the day will solve—
They turn, recur,
Revolve.


Stephen Edgar

The Yale Review

October 2016


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