darklight 10: the unclassifier

Previously on Darklight: a traveller, the railway guard Anélia, and the Ibid Bird, came to the Inverse Realms, where time runs backwards. They have taken the electro-trolley to Sonandinho, where Selena lives. The first episode is here.

We disembarked, I complained about
the less-than-clement weather: rain flakes
and snowlets that rose and fell around us,
the cycle of water in an inconvenient microcosm,
and there we were.

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darklight 3: in the rational rain

Previously on Darklight: a traveller on his way to the moon to find Selena had a bit of a scare. Fortunately, the ibid bird arrived and explained away all his problems. Now he’s back on track. The first episode is here.

In a notional breeze of sleepy air and light bulbs,
the sailing carriage rocked and swayed.
The ibid bird was cooing, roosting in my hair,
and lulled by trickling traces of minds
that once were mine, I awoke
or fell asleep.

~/~

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darklight 2: the mystery of the ibid bird

Previously on Darklight: a careless traveller has boarded a sailing carriage on the Darklight Rail. He dreams of finding long lost Selena at one of the lunar stations. Part one is here.

The tracks arched upward, the horizon, far below,
was lost in cloud, my socks were striped
in shades of peach and avocado green,
and the moon shone like a flashlight
that could do with a change of batteries.

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rewound world 11: mergers

Previously on the rewound world: four post-apocalyptic travelers at a café in the Nullarbor Plain have had their inconvenient truths revealed by the moderately bearded waiter. Episode one is here.

No-one disagreed. With murmurings and sighs,
they accepted that which, in another world,
might have been denied with vigor, with examples
tailor-made to create a false impression.

The waiter was encouraged.

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rewound world 7: the purpose

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.

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fênix 1: the wave

destabilisation_s1

The ether wave swept through and swept away
intangible imaginings: shimmers from the overworld,
refractions risen from the subterrain,
and the sephine webs connecting them.

When the wave had passed, the town of Fênix
was no longer cloaked in mystery and fantasy,
only naked objectivity remained,
a brutal realism that no-one could withstand.

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other reasons

cloud_control_s

If none of (a) to (f) apply, please explain your reasons in writing in the space labelled “Other.” Inmates are not permitted additional pages. 

[A selection of “Other” responses follows. Respondent’s names have been replaced by pseudonyms to preserve inmate anonymity. Comments scratched into the wall and/or with rows of indecipherable symbols were excluded.]

“Anonímia de Tal”

I measured my expectancies—
mantras, books, and pills in quantized repetition,
overtime and undertime spent flickering from pillow to post,
leaping with the pendulous clock,
though in a temporary lapse,
I once considered skin mites, so fearsome microscopically,
and the sparrows pecking hair lying fallen at my feet.

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the cat

the_future_of_green_paint_s

While I was washing roses by the gate
with a dash of liquid Omo on a toothbrush,
fish-heads came to mind,
and I began a metaphysical meander
with just the two of us: my neighbor’s cat and I.

Two chords for self-taught breathing,
causality’s unwound tidal oscillations,
nor birds nor raindrops nor Pangaea:
everyone is waiting for a doorway in the wind,
feather-dusting the furniture for departure.

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homo sapiens beta 9: circularity

horizon_s

Now there are two version of Proteus, the Jurassic prototype human. Proteus, the original, made of liquids, solids, and a not insignificant amount of gas, and the ionized and luminous Proteus II, created by Proteus when he said his own name. Proteus speaks with glowing lights, and conversely, the plasmoid Proteus II speaks with sounds that condense solids. Archie, the talking archaeopteryx pointed this out, but neither version of Proteus grasped its significance. Part one is here.

Don’t you see, you prehistoric buffoons?
If Proteus II recites the name “Evita,”
she’ll coalesce in flesh and fluid form.

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homo sapiens beta 8: reciprocity

the_yellow_explanation_s

Proteus, the Jurassic prototype human, speaks with luminous shapes, not sounds. The shapes melded to form two plasma creatures, Evita and Adamstown, who ran away together. His companion Archie, an ancient bird who now has the power of speech, knows how Proteus can be reunited with his beloved Evita. Part one is here.

There’s a way for you to join Evita,
who’s shockingly electric,
and would stop your heart
at the slightest touch.

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homo sapiens beta 2: vanitas

after_the_future_s

Proteus is a prototype human (beta release) living in Gondwanaland in the Jurassic era. Part one is here.

As it happened, Proteus could not speak with sounds:
when he opened his mouth and set his throat to vibrate,
glowing bubbles, leafy baubles, necklaced seeds,
a myriad of elemental protozoan shapes,
floated from his lips, sparking, drifting through the trees.

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paperback rider A: rooftop face time

remembered_by _the_penguins2_s

The intrepid binary pair, Librarian Millie and the employee who is searching for mythical Sheridarp, have reached the roof of the Dreamwalk Library. Rather than the urban environment they’d expected, their surroundings are desolate, and an unfriendly cloud of wasps is approaching. Part 1 is here.

Imperturbable Millie ignored the fearsome kilowasp.

I’m thinking that your so-called Sheridarp
is just a symbol, merely naming
what your 
soggy heart is seeking.
It stands for what you’ve never found.

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paperback rider 9: metricity and Millie

the_rooftop_c

Millie, the librarian, and the employee who is seeking mythical Sheridarp have been debating whether it can be found on the rooftop of their Dreamwalk Library. Part 1 is here.

Certainty’s uncertain, I’m almost sure.
Lesser libraries might be networked to the greater,
according to the principle of megawasps,
and Dreamwalk might be part of Sonandinho.
So please, dear Millie, my librarian, my master,
might we go together to the rooftop?

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return to the lost planet

anesthetic_runes_s

Microscopic particles of time
rain upon our lives.
Paper promises grow brittle,
mapped forgiveness folds, unfolds,
frays and tears along the creases.
Our memories refract through prisms
until the brightest day is lost
in anesthetic runes.

~/~

I heard a motor revving in the carport,
and from my gate,
I watched my Kia Starfish drive away,
with the spindly legged carport
galloping behind.

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