Christopher Edgar


At Port Royal

Should the heel of a shoe cry out
When separated from the body?
Dancing, you must think
Where to put your feet.
Too much and too little wine
(Maybe palm wine) says
Even the Grand Turk can find
The answer in a certain Italian book.

Girdle, beard, burnt hair.
Prophets think in figures,
Sins of taking things literally
When the two of everything are invisible.
Signs and effects, combinations of miracles,
They cross their arms and prefer to watch
Young ciphers learn to shimmy,
Never hear King Alpha's song.

Without such a counterweight—
Double laws, double figures, double captivity.
Imagine a body of thinking members,
How they would pray to be kept on.
Sometime too near or faraway-eyed,
We come close to it. Casuistry. Perpetuity.
Novelty. One opinion against another.
Mangrove, et cetera.

If anyone said…
The illuminations did us harm.
I attacked you on behalf of others.
At Port Royal we maintain five propositions,
Six fathers, and six orients at the beginning of six ages—
That all the alm-boxes of Saint-Merry can be opened,
That an arm is good as a foot or six-gun.
This is how Diana can be used.

In the day [that thou eatest thereof],
In a treatise on the vacuum,
The same river flowing over there
Is numerically identical to the same
River flowing in China. River of Babylon.
Escobar, master of conjugal acts, prove night is noon.
By their fruit, feigned peace remove.
So you are in this civil war.