Next Level, The

Forgetting wariness allows friendliness,
warlike defenses fall:
that is the weak-link.
The higher animals, all of them,
move beyond the fight, the flight,
to the friendship, organic addition—
the next level;

not robotic, but conscious decision;
branches removed from
poriferan clades,
Is befriending strangers defining,
like having prominent chins ?
Yes, even connections with contraptions:
being human.

The whirring machines like tail-wagging dogs,
no judgment or demands.
Thus, some will become
Although one may decompose off-grid,
mother is there at birth.
The essentiality of language
beckons loners

hence from the dark shadows of the wield
to lightsome sward, where most
take it to the next
Beyond the hearty handshakes of brothers,
to a union of auras
in beaded light-years spun like cotton webs:
awe from laced hands.

Eros is the losing of one’s mind,
level by next level;
from limbs conjoined to
the kiss,
and even closer: [CENSORED], the goal
being—one human being:
subtraction through addition; questioning
entry level

compared to subsequent levels ventured:
social evolution,
family to clans,
of lonely people seeking others
reflecting back their shadows,
heartening each to brave the next level,
not always up.

Still Life

In the frame:

the frame that moves

so still,

the four points

shake in the breeze,



stories before

and aft,

run their courses

and stop,

terminal end


In the space

paralyzed like


a still life

hushes before


Computer Screen

Programming all day on the Commodore
64 produces a mediocre score.
Such a step down from war-room machines
with tape reels, punch cards, and eerie green screens;
the dot matrix printers hammering glyphs,
zipping out reams: my reluctance to shift
toward digital homes, from analogue
continuity—the move from prologue
of gigantic boxes of vacuum tubes
to pocket phones replacing mainframe rooms.
The information age grows like kudzu:
resistance futile, chips in any purview.
From punch cards of Babbage to Turing-complete;
to a world-wide net of nothing discrete.
Great! Information now, not later;
but look out for the Terminator.

The Two [3]


A teenager in high school, Anne puts the lost time behind her, presses on, despite the occasional nightmares; gets a boyfriend, social network, after-school activities.

[Thirty-nine lunar months]

The tentacles of darkness reappear with a vengeance, worldwide—the sun struggles to make day known. Not in a vacuum, Anne surges with a feeling of oneness with the world.

The showdown:

The fight is apocalyptic, a real Revelations light show. Earth is saved. The darkness is plugged back into the Chaos manifold. Anne stops glowing.

Later, Anne wonders why the shadow wants out of the nighttime.

The Two [2]

ANNE DOES NOT RECALL ESCAPING the inconstant mass, a visible darkness connected to original Chaos. Notwithstanding amnesia, she feels a general uneasiness.

Still being Anne proves great resolve; she will never be a little girl again. However, the name is all she remembers.

Later though, she dreams of being hunted by something tearing through the night, unholy. It works quickly breaking through the barricades of her mind for entry, finally getting through. A single tear is all Anne has time for.

Anne inside the murkiness that disdains other agencies, locks hers away, the last vestige against the tightening dark arms.

The Two [1]

THIS IS THE THIRD TIME. It blobs into the dimension medusa-like, not as amorphous, but still black as a clouded new moon.

Anne knows this time she will not just think it away like before. The ooze strengthens with each incarnation. She senses determination, consciousness–before there was only unfocused malevolence.

Anne assumes a stance of power, asserts, “I’m not afraid of you,” as the convolving tentacles fire. It snatches the child into its darkness.

Years pass.

Anne, amnesic, steps from the nor’easter blizzard shadows onto her moonlit yard. Home. Anne’s mind, now, has become the stronger of the two.


⅔ of 20 Questions

vascular green;
seeding, rooting, oxygenating
chlorophyll foodstuff. Eukaryotic movers:
breathing, metabolizing, reproducing
heterotrophic, chambered

Inorganic Chemistry with a Twist

bloodless black;
killing, sleeping, resting
casket earth. Womb light:
awakening, rising, beholding;
viable current

Capping the Middle-Ground

reflective blank;
contrasting, inviting, defining
photon noise. Aether grave:
expanding, swallowing, erasing;
mysterious stoic

Sensation of Floating in Spacetime

perpendicular Cartesian;
unending, framing, curving—
breathing room. Interval dimension:
sequencing, ticking, flowing
progressive, indefinite