AGNI Online
  Subscribe      Donate    Stay Connected    Submit      About Us  

In Chambers: Local Law Enforcement Professionals

by Ed Pavlic

hadn’t seen the like since Achille
Baquet on clarinet & that
Perkins boy      light enough to float
away & dumb enough to work
both sides of the street      don’t know how
it's done in these parts      deputies
recall the time better than me :
found Drop A Sack & Hit ‘Em Quick

stiff as boards & tangled up tight
as frozen cats in a laundry sack
some have called it the winter swamp
routine      it’s our “All in One : Field
Sobriety Test for Yogis /
James Crow Voter Registration
Exam     a nephew at State came
up with the script: “put your nose

behind your kneecap & when you
get to infinity      kiss your
black ass goodbye & start counting
backwards”      boy’s a genius      just two
years up there      came back playing “Steal
Away” on nose-harp & jerking
his head round like it got stuck up
behind a rock in white water


Ed Pavlic is author of Paraph of Bone & Other Kinds of Blue, which won the The American Poetry Review / Honickman First Book Prize in 2001, and a book of essays, Crossroads Modernism (Univ. of Minnesota Press, 2002). He teaches in the English Department and directs the Africana Studies Program at Union College in Schenectady, New York. (2004)

End of Article
AGNI Magazine :: published at Boston University ©2008 AGNI