introducing readers to writers since 1995

April 19, 2005

"The Human Factor," David Lehman

by Ron Hogan
The gambler knows nothing's
more addictive than deception
with the chance that the betrayed one,
the spouse or the State, is pretending
or consenting to be deceived
for motives of vanity or greed
not different from his own,
leaving him with a choice to make
between his mistress and his self-respect--
which may be why the ideal reader
of Graham Greene's novels went
to a parochial school, was married
and divorced, has lived abroad
in Europe or Asia, plays in a weekly
small-stakes poker game, works
for a newspaper, lies for a living.

From When a Woman Loves a Man.

The title poem from this collection is also online. Lehman launched The Best American Poetry in 1988 and continues to serve as the overall editor for the series. I saw him read just a few weeks ago.

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