Die Versify

Deep in summer
stillness, an electric
hum of air conditioner
in B flat flat monotone
entrains my body
              monotonous.
 
Heat produced to cool
my neighbor thrums
the outside air, heats
up our collective night.
 
Mechanical multitudes
self-replicate in chorus,
relentless fridge and clock.
 
The only spell breaker
is a tape of Tibetan chant.
Deep harmonic overtones
conjure a resonance,
disturb the sine waves.
 
Sleepless in the Beaches,
I resist the single sound
as Blake deplores single
vision and Newton’s sleep.
 
The sound of the perpetual
twentieth century
colonizing our future with
 
a dominant beat, sales
pitched for comfort, con-
venience, reliance on
appliance.
 
The pity is not
that the century
has wound to a close but
that it’s whining
on and on…
 
Somewhere beyond
the pervasive rattle,
waves break on the shore.
 
Species diversify or die.
Imagine the endless
verse if I could only
sleep.
 

Front page image by Alan Weir.

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Penn Kemp

About the Author

Activist poet, performer and playwright Penn Kemp is Creative Age London's writer-in-residence. She is inaugural Poet Laureate for London Ontario, a Life Member of the League of Canadian Poets, and a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medal. Penn has published twenty-six books of poetry and drama, has had six plays and ten CDs produced, as well as award-winning videopoems. As Writer-in-Residence for Western University, her project was the DVD, Luminous Entrance: A Sound Opera for Climate Change Action, Pendas Productions. She hosts an eclectic literary show, Gathering Voices, on Radio Western. Quattro Books has recently published the second edition of Jack Layton: Art in Action, which she edited. Her latest play was the sold-out production of The Dream Life of Teresa Harris.
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