Friday, January 25, 2008

Puzzle by David Quarfoot, edited by Will Shortz

Reflections in this yawning abyss of a puzzle reverberate in a fragmented looking glass through contrasting images --
DUALROLES (3A. Versatile actors may play them) and CYRANO (45D. Edmond Rostand hero); MIRROR (20A. Ape) and ISEEIT (55A Spotter's confirmation); EMAJOR (18A. Key that doesn't include 58-Across) and ASHARP (58A. It's almost a B, scorewise); QUEEN (26A. Powerful piece) and PEON (53A. Underhand?); BEIGES (9A 23-Across and others) and ECRU (23A. Shade shade); ROTE (22A Habit) and INARUT (11D Stuck) in a chasm of TRUELOVE (15A. One and only) shattering amid CRIES (38D. Exclamations) of DONTLIE (39A. "Be honest!"), YEROUT (29A. Call from home), and YESINDEED (36D. "Of course"), and subtly forming a dark narcissistic crossword vérité.

The turmoil of life also exists here in the form of
SADRCITY (1A. War-torn Baghdad suburb); ELNINO (16A. Weather Channel topic); KIMJONGIL (35D. Head of state known to his people as "Dear Leader"); TRAP (40D. Piehole) mingling among ETUDES (28D. School exercises) and ITUNES (62D. Apple application) with ATALANTA (17A. Fleet runner of myth) paced to TEAR (54A. Zip).

Solemnness manifests itself with STATESMAN (1D. Henry Clay or William Jennings Bryan) and
ARTICLEVI (2D. It forbids religious tests for political office); SLIDEINTO (34D. Enter gently) ATEASE (46D. Calm) and STAID (48D. Composed), while REINHOLD (65A. Judge of films) lights a GASRANGE (60A. Pilot's place) in the SKY (34A. Pilot's place) with an ASCOTTIE (63A. Fancy haberdashery item) for GIJOE (12D. 11 1/2" soldier), ECSEGAR (43D. Swee' Pea's creator) and the OSOS (30A. Zoo de Madrid beasts).

To QUENCH (26D. Put out) this overly reflective ENOTE (13D. Online memo), a list of what's left, right, center, horizontal and vertical, then over and out...

Across: 19. Up to; 25.
Biblical miracle setting; 27. Boarding spot; 31. 1936 N.L. leader in slugging percentage; 33. Brooklynese pronoun; 37. Part of Manhattan's Alphabet City; 41. Onetime Serbian capital; 42. Show some spunk; 44. Drops in a theater; 45. Japanese model sold from 1970 to 2006; 47. Meccan pilgrim; 48. Some speakers; 51. Abbr. before a date; 57. Polit. label; 64. No longer in.

Down: 4.
Person found in a tree: Abbr.; 5. Buck; 6. Corinthian alternative; 7. It might hold a couch potato's potato; 8. Really hoped to get, with "for"; 9.It can be drafted; 10. ELM bark beetle; 14. Archaeologist David who found the lost Roman city of Kourion; 21. Made some waves?; 24. Word in some British place names; 32. Shade of blue; 49. Dirección sailed by Columbus; 50. British poet Tate; 52. Track-and-field equipment; 55. IPSE dixit; 56. 1982 film title role for Bruce Boxieitner; 59. Traffic stopper; 61. School dept.

"And what is a kiss, specifically? A pledge properly sealed, a promise seasoned to taste, a vow stamped with the immediacy of a lip, a rosy circle drawn around the verb 'to love.' A kiss is a message too intimate for the ear, infinity captured in the bee's brief visit to a flower, secular communication with an aftertaste of heaven, the pulse rising from the heart to utter its name on a lover's lip: 'Forever.'"

-- Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac, Act 3


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The Crossword Puzzle Illustrated.

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