Previously on the rewound world: we were on our way across the Nullarbor Plain when one of our number, John Pessoa, unexpectedly became an assortment of birds. The first episode is here.
We came upon a cluster of demountables
(that had been long ago)
where we gathered sandy bolts and feathers—
a tribute to John P.
For a while, we stood around our makeshift monument
in awkwardness and silence, until Deirdre chose to speak.
After parts three, two, one, a flashback to the home of the crayfish on their reformed moon.
We live in a concrete paradise,
we must show the galaxy,
attract discerning tourists
and credit cards.
This is the third part. Tenuously connected first and second parts are stored as data on a server.
A pointless unnamed human
was locked in stasis by Célia,
an interstellar traveler
who has a name.
A week and forty years pass by
in a single line of text.
The stasis ends, and one apartment block
still stands on planet earth.
I wrote a kookaburra
perching on a paling fence
motionless in the rain,
sharp eyed waiting for a worm,
but the words left worm impressions
as shallow as my florid thoughts,
washed away by the garden sprinkler.
It was once a loud industrial location,
but now it’s slightly damp: Venusian squid
with brollies promenade in the quiet streets
while humans pass their time
overpainting all their windows.
A small symbolic light above the planar world,
the curveless planetary horizon
and yapping dogs on the wind,
run I walk I queue I
grow tired, eyes close and flicker,
yet every photon tells a tale
of a restless luminous voyage.
After midnight I wander under
sodium doublet illumination
to the very end of the street.
on an unremarkable planet
Contessa Isabela fluttered a manicured hand.
Divers divas and devices,
glorified in dullness.
I crave novelty.
We’ll send someone to Planet Sauria
whence no-one has returned.
We might get lucky this time.
plagiarism on a beach in france
I’ve imaginated death:
dark rivers, darker seas,
the luminiferous earth,
growing to that darkness
in headlong blind embrace.
I share my thoughts with Joana.
Oh how you’ve changed, amor.
The city is to blame,
its exhumations and exhalations,
obsidian and glass.
It starts with fire and ends with rain,
zero is infinity
and my home
is filled with strangers,
yet their strangeness is not reciprocal.
worth the special introductory
price of free.
The scientist Irene in white
peered over her half-moons.
Let’s apply a little logic: if everything
is worthless, so is that idea.
Come with me to Improbable Park.
… meet the zeroth law of motion.
We’re dropping out of hyper now
into normal space,
the words of Azulinha, the fluidic pilot,
flashed inside my head,
and don’t touch that,
it’s not a percolator.
Soon there’d be no more
chromatic thought transference—
empathic rivers of the gaseous mind.
It would all be stuttering and stumbling
with optics and acoustics
on the surface of the planet.
In my mind I’m in a granite tower, fog and raindrops,
lichen and moss. The sea above its maritime level
is scattered and forgetful, tiny fish have fins
for swimming and for flight.
I chose a basement cavern and pretense,
Martyrdom Lite with a flower,
I curled on the runway where interstellar flights were landing
and bathed in temporal trickles,
lacking seriousness and gravitation,
factualising while my compass spun.
The planet’s hold had waned,
Newton’s fruit was drifting to the West
and ripening, yet I remained
while those around me rose.
Some people think we’re all the same beneath our hair,
they hope the thoughts they fear inside their head
are just a common cold. Others, that their
special vision of dominions and desires
is not a stuffy nose.
But I remember turquoise afternoons
when everything was intermediate,
and you and I could be by being,
when all our past was yet to happen
and even sins were innocent.
Ghosted fashion, sunglasses of darker mist,
and a bridge to be traversed,
although arrivals on a further shore
are never the ones who left.
For her, no warm embraces,
no distant tears;
without a moment’s regretful hesitation
she begins her journey.
The river far below is flowing russet, jetsam waves,
and tiny stars above are
little suns that can’t grow up, afterimages of
a universe long lost, afloat in panoramic darkness.
Once the sun was planetary, with
the earth its moon.
Once gravity followed a different rule
and the morning’s colors mattered.
Now the earth falls round the sun,
the moon around the earth,
but while our memories echo
with violets and fragrance, fragments of volition,
come with me, my friend.
In the photocopied forest,
where origami birds shed origami feathers,
where duplicates with papered eyes
riffle through the files of our dreaming,
where carbon copied life is rampant,
Rosalyn shows me a quick start guide
for human prototypes,
their care and feeding, how to keep them far
from wheels and fire,
and recirculant mechanics.
Our bonsai minds are caged and shaped,
replicas in miniature of something greater:
trains, the sky, and lightning.
I didn’t pay the bills electric,
now no lights electric,
just a fluid glimmer—
the ghosts from yesterday
illuminate my ectoplasmic reading.
Outside a spinning wind is rising,
furrowing the earth and sky,
and on the far horizon, mechanical invaders
with razored paddle wheels
scalpel air to vortices,
curling slinkies that cannot be
Do spaces matter without context?
Atoms to cells to Wilma to planets
and beyond more empty spaces.
All might be forgiven today,
prescriptive facts unfaced,
turned to continuous movement
in a land of distant windmills.