Bernard Gieske, US



Free Verse

The Murder of Colonel Harris

Found Poetry from page 1 of A Test Of Wills by Charles Todd


in this quiet part of Warwickshire……
      death came frequently…..
no stranger…..
      and murder was not unheard of…..

one fine June morning
      as early mist rose lazily…..

like wraiths in no hurry to be gone

      Colonel Harris was killed

      in a meadow fringed with
      buttercups and cowslips
      his last coherent thought ――


savage, wild, black fury….
    in one stark instant
           of realization
                 before oblivion
                        swept it all away

He died hard,
railing at God….

his ragged cry raised echoes
                        in the quiet woods
sent the rooks flying
                        even as the gun



A TEST OF WILLS is a first novel in a series that combines a unique kind of psychological suspense with vivid atmosphere and a tantalizing mystery (Charles Todd).


Praise for A Test of Wills

—Chicago Tribune

“Todd has written a first novel that speaks out, urgently and compassionately, for a long-dead generation and a world he never knew… . A meticulously wrought puzzle.”
—New York Times Book Review

“Remarkable…Todd, an American, seems to have perfect pitch in his ability to capture the tenor and nuances of English country life.”
—Kansas City Star

“Most ‘Golden Age’ detective novelists wrote as if the First World War hadn’t happened. In A Test of Wills Charles Todd gives us a Golden Age crime story in its proper historical setting. This is an intelligent, controlled, and well-organized first novel, rich with promise of a bright future. I look forward to the next.”
—Reginald Hill, author of Death Comes for the Fat Man










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