Where Be Dragons ?

dragon fossil
Drakeling Fossil Sculpture by Nightlyre


Where Be Dragons ?

Six limbs ?  Not an impossibility,
But why grow the lower four quite so stout ?
In flight, they’re only dead weight of little good utility,
And back on land, they’re never used for galloping about.
For all the traveller’s tales told,
It’s physics leaves the dragon cold.

It is a shame, but that is that –
Don’t curse the laws that bring us light.
There’s swarms of creatures to adore
Far more than sphinx or manticore.
The greatest wonder of the bat
Is how they find their way at night.
Don’t hope for dragons, save your wish
To glimpse upon a dragonfish.

Six tons ?  Not as heavy as some aircraft,
But far too heavy without massive thrust –
Birds can only fly because they’re lighter than the updraft,
And when they’re not (like ostriches) they’re left down in the dust.
For all the picture books we read,
It’s physics kills the dragon dead.

It is a shame, but so it goes –
Don’t wish for trolls or unicorns.
There’s hordes of creatures just as nice
As any roc or cockatrice.
The greatest beauty of the rose
Is knowing why it grows its thorns.
Don’t weep for dragons, they’re just lies –
Instead, let’s sing of dragonflies.




An original Minimoog Model D from 1971.



They may be named for Robert Mogue,
But that name never suited –
So when his synths first came to vogue,
The ‘Mogue’ was quickly booted.
For now the great subconscious found
A name as funky as their sound –
We only had to hear their fugue,
To know we had to call them Moog !



The Beckoning

detail from The Creation of Adam by Michelangelo


The Beckoning

It makes me afraid when I hear your voice,
For I cannot be sure that I hear your voice,
For what if your voice that I hear is mine
In my mind ?
And it makes me afraid when I hear your voice,
For what if it really then is your voice,
And what if the voice that is really yours
Isn’t kind ?

It makes me afraid when I hear your voice,
For I cannot be sure – should I dread or rejoice ?
If I ask for your help, will you ask for my choice ?
Please be kind.
And I get so afraid when I hear your voice,
For I know only I ever hear your voice –
But I hear, oh so clear – I’m in awe, I’m in fear
For my mind.



I originally had a middle verse, but felt it was saying too much.  Here it is below:


The Beckoning (unbeckoned)

So do I hear myself,
Or do I hear the Lord ?
Should I fear my health,
Or fear then to be cured ?
An epileptic epidemic ?,
Or a proto-schizophrenic ?,
Or a prophet proselytising an apocalypse polemic.
If this is the voice “In the Beginning was the Word”
Then how can such a voice have such a trouble being heard ?



Mist Connection

too early
Too Early by Jacques Tissot


Mist Connection

As though you came before, but unannounced,
I swear I’ve seen you somewhere else than here.
The memory exists, and waits to pounce,
And thereupon, your selfhood shall be clear.
I’ve seen you haunt another place, I’m sure,
But where, I own, has quite escaped my mind –
Yet maybe you’d accompanied a boor,
Or maybe your companion was refined.
So dare I play my hand without a trump,
And hope to win a trick before you guess ?
Perhaps I should be bold, and risk it all.
But worse, I think, if likewise I should stump,
And have to hear you bashfully confess:
“I think we may have met, yet can’t recall.”



The New Man

detail from Android by GG-arts


The New Man

Whoever thought,
Whoever thought that androids were a good idea ?
Whoever thought,
Whoever thought that we should be how they appear ?
I swear it’s damned impossible to spot the latest gear.
I swear it’s damned impossible to shed the tinge of fear.
We swear they’re damned impossible – and yet we know they’re here –
Somewhere near.

Why did we ever think
That we could build machines that think,
And never have them think about themselves ?
How did we miss the link
That thinking’s done by those who think ?
So what are we – just rookie geeks still tinkering with valves ?

How did we come to build
Machines in all-ways better-skilled,
Yet looking all too-close to tell ?
This world is human-shaped,
So they are in-our-image draped –
Familiar and comforting, they ape their masters all too well.
Our form and speech and thoughts are theirs,
For what use is a robot who can’t even climb the stairs ?

The wettest dreams of engineers,
So perfect in each pore and hair –
The latest model, so we hear,
Can even cry synthetic tears.
But is there lurking in the gears
The cogs of recognition there,
The spark of something more aware ?

They work our shifts, they sweep our stores,
They slave at foul and fatal chores.
They’re never paid, beyond repairs,
And all the while they watch from blinkless stares.
They earn our wage and wage our wars,
And scrutinize all man’s affairs.
But will they snatch what’s mine and yours –
To live our lives, and care our cares ?

Whoever thought
Whoever thought that androids were a good idea ?
Whoever thought
Whoever thought to ever trust a boasting engineer ?
I swear they’re only waiting for some moment opportune,
I swear they’re only waiting till their programs are immune,
We swear it’s only time until the technocrat typhoon –
Somewhen soon.



Maximum Maxims



Maximum Maxims

We all cringe at clitches,
They bring on the twitches –
We see them as hackneyed and vague.
We look down on clitches
As droppings and glitches,
Avoiding them all like the plague.

But with such a dissing,
Just see what we’re missing !
Take heed, here’s a word to the wise –
There’s beauty in clitches
That awes and bewitches
The scales from over our eyes.

There’s wisdom on view,
And variety too,
Each diff’rent as chalk is from cheese.
By rushing past clitches
For linguistic riches
We’re missing the wood for the trees.

They still get it right,
Thought they often seem trite –
Familiar breeding contempt.
They’re seen as, these clitches,
Too big for their britches,
As language that’s drab and unkempt.

I know we get lazy
And pluck the same daisy
Each time when the going gets tough,
But still we need clitches
To scratch where it itches
When other words just ain’t enough

If we were more caring
We’d use them but sparing –
Then surely they’d still pack a punch
The wit of some clitches
Should have us in stitches
(But don’t, when it comes to the crunch.)

If used in rotation,
The next generation
Will not suffer famine nor feast.
Don’t wear out the clitches
Or park them in niches,
But gladly embrace with the beast.

Let’s let them lie low,
Take it steady and slow,
For a little will go a long way.
There’s life in the clitches,
New tricks in the bitches,
For ev’ry old dog has his day.



Brolly Dolly

Yellow Umbrella by babsmojo


Brolly Dolly

What is it with black umbrellas ?
Only make the weather darker !
When the skies are less than stellar,
Do not make them even starker !
Make our brollies blue and gold,
A private sunbeam to unfold –
The overcast may make us pout,
But when it rains, the sun comes out !