Alexa, What Is One Plus One?

Alexa, What Is One Plus One?

‘I think you know the answer to that one.’

 

Because I would not, could not stay calm

or reasonable, full of fact-based evidence…

Because instead of all the answers

I had questions of my own…

Because I stamped my feet at injustice

and cried noisily at films

(quietly into my pillow at night)…

Because he asked questions he already knew the answer to,

just to test and tease and lecture on

till touch has gone, unless it’s right swipe…

Because who wouldn’t rather be a hammer than a nail?

 

…he bought Alexa as a Christmas present for himself.

amazonecho

It’s Open Link Night over at dVerse Poets Pub and any form of poetry is welcome, so please do join in and have fun.

The Writer’s Eternal Promise

Tomorrow and Ever After

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Tomorrow I will sit demurely

wrestle words down to the ground

with a flicker of my lashes

flash of sopweed from the Bard.

 

Tomorrow my characters will come alive:

fight each other, bicker, woo.

Plotholes will hang their grimey faces,

poems stop barking at the moon.

 

Tomorrow I’ll use post-its in coloured gradations,

fill spreadsheets and schedules, submit with method.

Each sapling of wisdom, each stray pun I will corral

till the gravity of the day after arrives with a thud.

 

But maybe not just yet. I will be off to Geneva this coming weekend for the Meet the Agent event which I helped organise, then delivering some training to a UN organisation (my freelance work still seems very much in demand, even if no one wants my talents on a more permanent basis), also wrangling with the French tax office, who still don’t seem to have understood the messages I’ve been sending since August 2016. If I ever do finish my WIP, it will be dedicated to them for their ‘contribution’.

The Beauty of Technology

I’ve been experimenting with some new poetic forms recently, because I’ve never been too comfortable about prose poems. What makes it different from experimental prose? I struggle to understand. Also, I’m amused by the marketing patter on some of our electronic devices, so they gave rise to this…

Innovation is advancement but not precursor of success, pervades our daily lives, frustrates us with its complexity and unreliability to the extent that globalisation enables us to embrace new products and services.

Is ‘carriage return’ now obsolete? Has sense-making ceased to matter?

We crave tangible products, satin-coated sensuous curves,

Chick-lit metallic moulding our systems

Augmented realities and playfulness

Passive-aggressive well-modulated female voices

That we can shut up in an instant (unlike our wives)

To understand the music of the should, we need sentiment analysis and emotion management, we need to move past utility to ease of use and access all hours. Oh, and playful surprise! Please entertain me. It’s all about the image, the swoosh of light around the globe in an instant. Encompass, integrate, unify in the twilight glow of sameness. Susceptible like all the others, you reach out to grasp and bind my gaze to ever-recurring shape-shifting values.

From CBS Local, Houston.
From CBS Local, Houston.

 

Coffee Shop Haibun

In an attempt to escape the chill in my house and save on heating bills, I took my writing to a café recently, which finally gave rise to some lighter verse. Over at dVerse Poets Pub, we are focusing on ekphrasis, combining art and poetry, allowing them to complement and lift each other. So, instead of a photo of a current Viennese coffee house, I will show you a picture by an anonymous painter showing the first coffee house in Vienna, The Blue Bottle, and acknowledging the Turkish legacy of the brew.

Zu der Blauen Flaschen, from www.dorotheum.com
Zu der Blauen Flaschen, from http://www.dorotheum.com

There is a constant buzz in the air and I can’t help but catch random nouns, fleeting storm of verbs, wondering about the beginning or end of a story. Here once men (and only men, save for serving-wenches) met for important discussions, philosophy and politics, courtly tricks well played. Nowadays it’s families, business meetings and angsty writers. Spoons clink, raucous slurps, children roll playfully under the table. The names of the beverages seem to change daily, as do the baristas: soy-free double cortado, skinny flat Americano… I need a dictionary. Foam and coffee stained, my cup stands a forlorn witness to my frantic scribbling.

Warm my hands on mug
Waiting for inspiration:
Caffeine soaring lark.

Another Ode to Our Cat

Zoe, also known as Zozo, also known as 'Ma puce', doing sucky-sucky on her blanket.
Zoe, also known as Zozo, also known as ‘Ma puce’, doing sucky-sucky on her blanket.

She binds us with cooing when we find no words
save to admire her licks, trusting gaze, her faults.
She endures the laying on of hands
when they cannot tell their mother of their love
or their father how much they miss him.
They bury their faces in her butter-golden fur
warmed by sunbeams, chased by catnip,
listen for the reassuring snore and rumble in her purrrr.

In a few days, it will be three years exactly since we adopted our cat. She has brought such love, comfort and fun to our lives that she deserves a new poem. Here are some previous poems in her honour: by me and my boys.

 

The Seas in a Whisper (Quadrille)

Today is Quadrille Monday at dVerse Poets Pub. De (Whimsygizmo) is our word prompter and wishes us to write a quadrille (exactly 44 words, title not included) using the word “whisper” or variants – whispered, whispering, whispers. The hush-shushing sounds reminded me of that beloved British institution: the Shipping Forecast.

forecastmap
High winds: birds convene to Lundy to rest
grooves and gaps
wait out Fair Isle tempest
in dwindle of hay nests
reflect polished beaks
in cloudless brown of preys’ eyes.
When Malin gaze darkens
let’s muster the courage to beacon
our Viking coast.

Haibun: Things I’m Done With

I’m done with swashbuckling pirates or panthers, that faint gleam of danger to hasten the pulse and pinprick the senses. Where winds sweep dry, offer me water, not desert fire. Where waters swirl deep, offer me bridges, not islands.
Give me slow, earthy kindness: spilt fruit of joint labours. I open the window and wait for new breeze.

A plant with deep roots
that can catch my tumbleweed
rest sweet for a while.

Tumbleweed caught in a fence, from National Geographic.
Tumbleweed caught in a fence, from National Geographic. Not the kind of rest I mean…

I’m linking this to Haibun Monday prompt at dVerse Poets Pub. If you want a very good explanation of what a haibun is and does, please visit the Pub and check out all the great examples of prose-poems linked in there.