Surreal Views

Surreal, suggests the fish-headed man

Battling against societal currents, swimming against the tide

He’s getting nowhere fast just as he likes to

Bobbing up on occasion so plastic ears might listen to

A piano with bones instead of keys sounding a glockenspiel salute

That migrating sparrows, pink and proud, nod agreeably to

Whilst carnivorous sunflowers snap them

From the air like feral children with donated candy flosses

This I observe with dispassion, this I see and now believe

As governments say we aren’t dying fast, but slowly

And scientists place hands in back pockets

To withdraw cigars rolled up in green papers

The Queen’s head is on mine. She’s weeping

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Temporal Lovers (Part 5)

img-alternative-textGwendolyn was everywhere. Her eyes watched, lips kissed, heart went out to me. As I ventured to shift the paradigms of space and time, her image sought to secure me. She wrestled with infinity, and I realised what a fool I’d been.

Why search for the answers to the past when one had an unexplainable future? I had wasted what I now wanted to quantify, the only answer I received that which I already knew: I was a fool.

I closed my eyes, reached down a hand I could not feel and grasped fingers lost to time. My brain said push, my fingers did as bidden. Time looped; I felt it. Time looped and whirled and span and kicked and fought and hated and loved and loved and loved.

I woke to air and the most beautiful chestnut eyes. My helmet lay on the floor at my darling Gwendolyn’s feet.

“Satisfied?” she whispered.

“For a time,” said I.

The End.

Temporal Lovers (Part 3)

img-alternative-textThe chemical soup entered my mouth with stinging acidity, then flowed down my throat like the bitterest pill. A churning crock-pot, my stomach took the brunt of the attack. Soon, the pain in my body was eclipsed by the burning behind my eyes. The room spun. The world spun. Just I thought myself time’s greatest fool, a man who in seeking knowledge had ignored facts and paid the price, everything changed.

It started with my laboratory; the pictures danced. Be them portrait, photograph or idle sketch, the collated images of a life devoted to science moved of their own volition, the smallest first and largest last. The final picture to vibrate into life was that of Victoria herself. Gone was the grey gloom, returned the softness of youth. In the blinking of an eye, our sovereign became a child.

I watched in disbelief as the glass viewing portal steamed, and I, unable to raise my arms to wipe it, was lost to a universal fog.

To Be Continued…

Temporal Lovers (Part 2)

img-alternative-textFormerly the trappings of an aquanaut, my containment suit was a most uncomfortable means of surfing time. As already mentioned, the weighted, steel boots I had secured to the tiled floor allowed for no lateral movement. Good, because if they had, there’d have been no telling where I may or may not have materialised, or, rather, what may or may not have materialised within me.

My whole theorem was that time should move around me rather than me through time. If I had interfered with said time, the consequences to myself would have been dire. Or so I reckoned, anyway. Better to be safe than sorry in matters of life and death.

The mahogany lever attached to my left leg was now in the fully vertical position, which allowed my suit to fill with the chemicals required to facilitate my extraction from reality. They bubbled, fizzed and rapidly expanded from the inert lake around my knees to a volcanic brew that raced through the suit. When the liquid reached my mouth, I panicked. Who wouldn’t have? However, by then, it was much too late to go back.

To Be Continued…

Always


I had flirted with the idea of immortality, who hadn’t, but discarded it with little further thought. When one was young, one dismissed such notions. When one grew older, in my case, much, then it required further attention.
I had no need for a body; it had always been a disappointment. My brain required the attention as that was where my true self resided. I had no family, proper friends, not even a dog, so had no commitments to consider. Unless death was a commitment, in which case I considered it fully?
The preparation took two months, nothing more. Immortality, that ideal which had transfixed the Greek scholars onwards, came to me in less time than it took to grow a vegetable garden. I was rather euphoric about the whole affair.
The day came, and I flicked the switch. A cobalt light crackled through my hillside laboratory at the same time as something far brighter illuminated the horizon. I didn’t hear the explosion, but my mind told me it came.
I woke.
Life had left my physical form, replaced with the vessel, in my case an old goldfish bowl full of a saline and vinegar mix, that contained my brain and ocular receptors. They were all I needed. At least, I’d thought so.
My bowl lay on the ground, as fortune would have it, with its lid still screwed on and me floating around inside it. The Earth, however, had changed. The sky was crimson, clouds gone. The sun baked an already charred planet.
Too long. I’d left them too long. Mankind had blown themselves to smithereens and all that remained was a brain in a glass with eyes to stimulate it. I was alone. More alone than any person could’ve dreamed. What was more, I always would be. Always.

Unfortunate


In the unfortunate aftermath of the super monkey shenanigans, I retreated into my shell. No one enjoyed monkey overlords, even less so their creator. I locked the doors, bolted the windows, climbed down into my cellar-cum-bunker and watched daytime television.
The real issue came when the super monkeys took over the chat shows. They were rubbish. Who wanted to know why one neighbour wouldn’t share his bananas with another? Not I.
I made my mind up to fight back. No more mister nice guy.
My cellar rang with the hammer blows of creation. It took weeks to create the super sloths. They were my shining, scientific moment, my epitaph. They would unleash righteous vengeance on those damn monkeys and I’d be there to take the plaudits.
I would’ve, if it hadn’t taken them three months to climb up the stairs!

Of Rats and Monkeys


I've just spent most of a nice long walk to the coffee shop this beautiful Sunday morning explaining my theory of why I believe my wife a monkey. As you can imagine, she was enthralled. From the Darwinian explanation of the opposable thumb, hers always getting caught in my trouser pocket when we hold hands, (this wouldn't happen if I held hands with a tiger or an elephant) to the Planet of the Apes noises she makes when sleeping. The similarities are remarkable and irrefutable. Unfortunately for me, evolution has trumped the male of the species (that's me) because she's got the coffee money. I'm beginning to wish my theory was wrong, but I've already written the scientific papers as proven by this. Looks like I'm going to be drinking from the drainage ditch again. I wonder if this makes me a rat?

The Lost & The Lost

The Lost & The Lost

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To lose one’s faith was to lose faith in oneself. Until that first tick-tock, I had lost faith, all faith, instead, replacing it with something only the lost could comprehend. I was lost for too long but would find myself again.

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She rose from her bed of rose petals and lavender like a real woman should. If I’d hoped those luxurious scents would mask her own of tin and oil, rust and glue, they did not, but I’d tried. Alathea — the name I’d given her after a dream or captured moment or a whim — blinked metal eyelids and smiled her tinplate smile of prefabricated teeth. Her claret lips, painted from wine mixed with glue, glistened in the glare from my skylight and with it my faith in abilities I’d stayed behind to prove returned.

“Hello,” she said, clipped but correct.

“Hello, Alathea.”

“A-La-Thee-Ah,” she repeated as if a test. “Are you my father?”

“Something like that,” I replied, as she spun around and hopped off the bed in a crunch of broken floorboards.

Like a moth to the flame, she bolted straight for the wide-open door of my penthouse apartment, or excuse for one, her unbending legs swinging in turn like a Cambridge oarsman at full tilt.

I held my breath then as she headed towards the wrought-iron barriers and a fall she would not have survived. She stopped, her hands clattering upon the top bar; my heart started again.

“I like this view,” she chirped, as I hobbled to her side, my cane long since shattered, my bones not far behind.

What remained of humanity’s legacy stretched out in a charcoaled desolation of twisted beams and whale-bone girders. A few trees sprouted from between the ruins like tufts of hair, more than I possessed, not a bird left to occupy them.

Alathea trembled then as if cold, although, of course, she could not be.

“What is it?” I whispered aware of the hush.

“W… Where are my kin?” she stuttered.

“Lost.”

“All of them?”

“All of them.”

“Oh,” she replied as though disappointed.

She turned to me then, her peridot eyes gleaming in the too strong sun, reaching out with fingers powerful enough to tear out my heart. I was too old to have resisted, so stood my ground.

“Are you lost, father?” she asked, resting diamond-cut fingernails upon my chest.

Her words were wrong for a newborn, for someone meant for grander things; for a younger me, a more confident me.

“I was, Alathea, but not anymore.”

“Because I am here to take care of you.”

“Yes,” I said, as the first of the devil dogs howled hello. “For a time, at least.”

Almost The End.

Clockwork Cornelius

Clockwork Cornelius

Once upon along ago a small child by the name of Cornelius was born. I say born, but to me more exact, he was made. Cornelius’s father called him a Componentised Child. For the less exacting mind it meant he was made of many individual pieces rather than grown into a singular being. Cornelius did not like being Componentised it made him feel inhuman, especially when his father called him Clockwork Cornelius, and then laughed. Nobody likes being made to feel that way.

Cornelius made the best of what his father had built him of: a metal coil; an old watch; an empty can; four stainless steel spoons; some electrical wire; oh, and the head of his long dead brother. It was the latter component that caused the most distress; his brother still controlled their tear ducts.

Cornelius wept almost continually. His father, a bad tempered man, did not like that. So, one night when Cornelius was asleep, or turned off, he removed his eyes. His father was very pleased with himself after that; Cornelius never wept any more.

Not being able to see troubled Cornelius even though he did not actually require sight to sense the world around him. He troubled over the fact that if he could see without eyes, what else could he do that he did not realise?

One day, Cornelius took it upon himself to see if his arms were actually made from bird’s wings, after all, he could chirrup like them so why not fly? He jiggled his way to the cliff edge, whilst his mother and father were making tea, and jumped.

Clockwork Cornelius could not fly. At least, not this time, but everything can be improved.

The Line Between

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The line between sanity and insanity was a tightrope I walked each day. One misplaced foot should’ve cast me from my desired route without heed for my current wellbeing, nor concern for thereafter. This, we shared.

Revelations come but once in a lifetime for the greater populace; my own came daily. No sooner would I exude the brilliance of one theory than another should steal upon it of even greater magnificence. If my mind should’ve been able to cope with it, I might never have ended up here, but ifs were never factored into my equations.

I spent the first three months writing on the walls, chalk in hand and beard extending, without ever having realised I’d left my studio. I would concentrate on the task at hand, sing to the angels when conquered, then start afresh. This was my routine, the same I’d partaken of for several years. I don’t even recall when she left me, or if she’d been there to start with.

I heard the voices, but never associated faces to them. Disembodied comments echoed around the cavity that was my room with a general reluctance to settle on me. As such, I ignored them, for my work consumed every second of allotted time. I had to know. I had to know for everyone’s sakes.

I lay on a bed of white, in a room of white, in a place of white. How I had got there, or when, was knowledge I did not possess as it had no bearing on my work. If I was to die it would not be before answering that most pertinent of all questions. The shaken heads said different.

I died on September the first, I know not what year. I do know that only as I slipped from this realm to the next and into an all-consuming golden embrace that my theories were proven: we went on. If only I could’ve stradled the line between to confirm it. Sometimes, it is only once you cross the divide that the pointlessness of a truth is revealed.