29 January 2010


In the week that Apple launch the new and possibly thrilling IPad, I too have created a paean to technology inspired by poet Tony Williams' stint as the Guardian's poetry workshopper. He wishes us to think of commodities. I have entered this before (see Gas) but have yet to be published on those hallowed webpages. As usual I've gone wildly 'off-message'; but it is true to say without my MP3, wantonly reactionary in its non-Apple-ness, I would be a lesser man.

You cannot see but under my shirt
I am working a panel of pert
buttons with my fingers, and coils
of white wire lie against my skin.
The MP3 sits reassuring and thin
to protect me from the gargoyles
of a thousand white headphone-
wearing passengers who vant to be alone.

We forge six-hundred glittering train miles
in a capsule battered by bomb-lit vials
of light. You cannot see but this MP3 machine
has a long cord, a gland, a spiny dart
that sews my inner ear to my inner heart,
whose sound within its glaucous mine
is pearly-eyed and huddled on my bones
as I pass through various travel zones.

Em-Pee-Three, AFG

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