Mennonite Poetry Home | Larry Nightingale



Marconi (the final transmissions)
                                a considered fiction

      In this life—this living, he says, the strange
frequencies come and go, and still no ghost
or angels ever winged in off the wireless cold
and kissed him. No, it should not surprise nor
trouble him so very much, he says, were he
to feel forever lonely... Yes, he murmurs,
some days the life's not worth a kite. Some days
this living's not worth the long night and the white
noise of the systems... poor Guglielmo, little Marconi.
Some day, he says, it may well be, may well be possible
to transmit and receive. Past three dots and dashes—everything
and anybody! But, for him, to work that universal dial,
well—if the heart is not in it, he says,
it's not worth the blister. And high up on Signal Hill
the old transistor tower signals... lonely, lonely.

Aerial's down. Silence of the crystal soul's coming in clear.

Someone's permanently rolled radio coordinates to zero.

There are a zillion hurts and megahertz of abstract fear

and love and loathing, out there, somewhere, floating,

twisting round the sphere

and little Marconi.

© Larry Nightingale




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