Today's poem is by Nick Conrad


Just off the assembly line, a thing
bought and sold, lacking a manual
and without warranty, defective

yet running still on some technology
that predates even vacuum tubes.
Some thing, some something, gizmo and not.

Some random arrangement of flesh and bone.
Some wired frame, but without batteries.
Some wild card. Some joker set spinning.

A cage, a thing all surface, a wind up
with no strings attached, gear grind
and contact spark masking the timer's whir.

Chance's favorite instrument, source
of crazed pizzicatos, thumped out
arpeggios. Even when still, not.

Endless, this parsing of the distant
horizon; a mobile listening post
relishing even the slightest rustle.

Broadcast tower, totem, some dream
catcher topped with hair, some data trap
uploading garbled bits of this and that,

some cordless blender set on a speed
beyond frappe as it dances across
the countertop to a self-made music.

Copyright © 2006 Nick Conrad All rights reserved
from Southern Poetry Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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