Thursday, February 23, 2006

Machine Resurrection

(After several attempts)

Take down these minerals,
down into this red, dim
liquid of us,

Insertion points made
pure by pulsing voltage
through silicon,

Deathly flesh made
into shapes of unloving,
stylized grace,

Unbound by that
death that hangs
upon us like leper’s stench,

Holiness accomplished
with electrical current
and combustion,

This machine resurrection
so hard and dark upon
the flesh of Eden,

This rising from the
mud and spark of
mundane miracles,

This denunciation of
the living wounds we
carry like holy texts,

We yearn so hard that
our own forms cannot
but twist about fate’s axle,

And thus we persevere,
girding these tombs
of flesh with new chrome,

And thus we escape this
night fear that holds us
with octopus limbs,

And we find a third road,
deathless and dry,
so far from innocence,

Elysian fields tilled in,
happy, silent dead
now roaring and
re-invented, somehow
animate after all sense
and purpose has
been exhausted.


MB said...

Wow. I like it. This feels like a compassionately saddened look at the desperate choice of "the third road" - the aim for immortality that snuffs out real life.

Mushster said...

We yearn so hard that
our own forms cannot
but twist about fate’s axle

I like it too but this in particular, jumped out at me. (Btw, I downloaded that song, thanks).

Bill said...

Holiness accomplished
with electrical current
and combustion

You've been peeking through my garage windows again haven't you?!?

This, for a machine-head like me, was a very powerful piece.

drthunder said...

I've read this a number of times, Firehawk, and find myself attaching a new meaning to your words each time I read it. Fascinating! You have a wonderful way with words.

Firehawk said...


This one came to me weeks before, but I was at work, walking around, and it slipped away again. Every time I'd sit down to write this one, I'd end up with something else. Even this version of the poem is vastly different from the one I found in my head that first day.


Glad to see you. Hope you enjoyed the song I mentioned.


I've tried to cut down on the whole "peek in the window" thing. I figured you'd see something you appreciated in this one, however.

Of course, you said "Machine-head", so now I'll have the song by Bush in my mind for the rest of the day.

Thanks for coming over, everyone.

MB said...

Ah, the one that slipped away... That can be frustrating. But I'm learning to have the faith that if it doesn't show back up in precisely the original form, it will show up in some form and be of use eventually -- if it was any good. That's my theory, anyway!

So is this what your last few poems were working toward? Or do you think of them as being different? (I mean, they ARE different, of course, but are they related?) It's always intriguing to see how another's mind works. Do you think it does the original one justice, even though it's not the same?

Firehawk said...


In the main, I'm always curious about how it would have turned out, had I been able to get it down "in the first breath". I'm not down about it, it's just a matter of interest, and a little annoyance that it took so long to come out.

I do feel that the last few pieces are different, but they're certainly influenced by the idea of Machine Resurrection. That's another thing...sometimes that incipient poem that sticks like a failed sneeze can cloud your reasoning and affect all the poems you write until it finally purges.

Thanks for the interesting questions. I don't always get to discuss theory and practice with anyone.

MB said...

I was just curious, and I don't often get to tap into the mind of another either, but it's always interesting when I do, as now. The last few poems seemed to play off a similar theme, but they also had a very different kind of feel. But, for this reader at least (always a suspect perspective, of course), this one worked the best. But then, they are all different enough it's perhaps unfair to compare! Your analogy to a failed sneeze was apt, and made me chuckle. Thanks for answering my questions, Firehawk.

Across Inconstant Breath

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