static, snow, poor reception


Day twenty nine, a synesthetic blizzard
all around. Maths is melting, 
braindrops trickling down
the paper 
chasing swirls of tangled crossings out.

I read back from my diary,
each over-written page of logic
countersigned and stamped
by cat’s paw on the inkpad,
with spattered blood from scratches
in the margin.


In my youth, I suffered from
myopic vision and general disappointment
with the world, but thankfully
my parents went to scientific
specialists who agreed
on comprehensive

I’m fully charged, right to left,
neutral on a certain line,
and in my adolescence:
from my fingertips to lovers—
one caress will stop all foolish cardiac
pulsations, then a second      clear      they start again.

Now I wear a low-key costume,
latex yes, with cellophane
3D glasses, but not in garish colors
(for insulation mainly),
and live in isolation
with a warning label—hazard class
number nine.

I’m a laser mouse
that scurries on a glass top table:
the arrow doesn’t move and no-one finds it.

I talk to paper with a pen when there’s nothing on TV,
recite resistor color codes,
and wonder whether sense and meaning
are necessary and sufficient
to each other.

Today I met Electra
at Radio Shack,
dressed in red and green
until I took my glasses off,
and over coffee and electrolytes
with awkward gaps—a little snoring from Electra—
we discussed resistor color codes

Verne’s lunar journey in his luxurious cannonball

Bradbury’s ice cream scoops of solar lava

the moon’s incipience

and the petaled wheel of the sun.


  • cat’s claws are electrically insulating
  • dangerous goods hazard class 9 covers a wide range from batteries to biphenyls
  • The Golden Apples of the Sun, Ray Bradbury (1953)
  • From the Earth to the Moon, Jules Verne (1865)

alien habitat

18 thoughts on “static, snow, poor reception

    • Thanks Frank, glad you liked it. I wish I had a bit more time for writing. Either that or just a little organisation as opposed to the usual chaotic randomness.

  1. i often wonder how the physics in your poems would work, the realize i lack in the scientific knowledge that we have & so give up any hope of understanding your own trademark science. i am curious as to how an Australian can know anything about blizzards, let only ‘synaesthetic blizzards’? haha.

    • Hi Daniel, exactly, blizzards and snow are pretty much fantasy for me, especially with temperatures currently over 40C. My experiences are with liquid air that I once poured out of a second floor window to create a fog bank for passersby; and Brazilian snow: so much detergent pollution that a river foamed at a cascade with rising bubbles of foul smelling gas.

      In terms of science, there is some literal truth in this piece (as opposed to metaphorical). When I was pre-teen, I put together a small Van de Graaff (high voltage) generator. I would stand on a pile of comic books to charge myself, then run to the kitchen and light the gas stove with a spark from my finger. That being said, a permanent two sided electric charge is sci fi. I think.

  2. “Today I met Electra
    at Radio Shack,
    dressed in red and green
    until I took off my glasses…”
    this made me laugh out loud.
    brilliantly thought provoking as usual.
    so I am wondering if the 3D glasses were to tone down the multi dimensional, sensical bombardment already experienced?

    • Glad it amused 🙂 . Yes, the red and green fringing around everything works for that, and also the protagonist wanted to avoid accidental electrocution. Cellophane is an electrical insulator, and where would you find cheap cellophane glasses if not the old-fashioned 3D? Of course the newer plastic 3D glasses would work as well, but they don’t look as cool, and with the older ones you can recolor your world by closing one eye 😎 .

    • Yes, I so love the irony in there, that the glasses are usually used to add dimension, but you needed to reduce what was going on. And you are right, as excited as I was to get those new glasses when we saw Rogue One, it really would have been awesome to pull out some old ones. Do you have some of those?

    • Irony? 😮 Seriously I’m way better with resistor color codes, and they’re synesthetic 🙂 , for example red is two and green is five. Yeah, it would totally be worth the headache. I have a collection but only the new ones, including from Rogue One. I always forget to bring a pair with me.

    • You’re welcome, Randy. I do have a voice that puts people to sleep, including what I talk about 🙂 , but a slight exaggeration there. Usually people say stuff like “Oh is that the time? I really have to go home and give the cat a bath” or similar.

  3. Feral kitty has had a bath. She kept trying to jump out a closed window, it was that horrible for her to get wet. My shirt has numerous holes from her claws I’ve had to sew.

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