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J A N U A R Y   1 9 8 1

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by David Solway
Hear David Solway read "My Mother's Chess" (in RealAudio):

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Also by David Solway:
Credo (1998)
The Dream (1997)
My Daughter at Chess (1997)

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She plays a curious game;
unexpectedly will strike
from any quarter in a storm
of near-perpetual check

and yet at the end expose
a too-long forgotten king
or for no good reason lose
her queen, quite as confusing

as confused. Does her better
nature gain the upper hand,
the inveterate sweetness there,
incapacity to reprimand? --

which makes for dubious chess
but an indulgent parent.
I might have wished it otherwise:
better chess; less lenient.

Copyright © 1981 by David Solway. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
The Atlantic Monthly; January 1981; My Mother's Chess; Volume 247, No. 1; page 48.

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