umbilicus electronicus

“Girl: Phone: History, there of”

text[her] emojis tactile silica
snap #tease thought you loved
test limits
selfie – nude – score
trade – nubile save screen
bubblegum cards replaced

email[her] lots of CAPS!
GOT IT! my own computer
and!!!!!!! a SECOND LINE
call me pleaseeeeee
it’s dial-up, have to log off :=(

call[her] petticoat ruffled
over sill- spills night
pretty princess pink light
party line- giggles muffled

swing[her] PE[nnsylvania] 6-5000
war footing – Bakelite – rotary dial
rows and rows of
secretaries grow

bell[her] instead of Meucci’s telettrofono
dissect apparatus, electromagnetic,
diaphragm, wire coil- voice
vibrates – 140 years first test
“I want to see you”
Pentatonix channels Bieber

Authors note: The d’Verse prompt is to select an object, write about it from different perspectives and link together contrasting poems in a Cubist fashion. This is my second poem, the first “Laid to rest under Patterson’s needle” is here. The Daily Post prompt is ‘Test’. The Pennsylvania 6-5000 and Pentatonix links go to YouTube.


18 thoughts on “umbilicus electronicus

  1. Brian….I didn’t understand the prompt at all,…only after reading various poets offerings did I get a clue. Not to fast here. My mind is locked in particular poetry, but yours really brought forth what was asked by the prompt. This stuff is hard in the waking hours (at least to me) but I understand this dream stuff. Yes, you can go to sleep and let the subconscious do the heavy lifting. This was illuminating, your verse.


    • Thanks for your thoughts. I do agree that this was a difficult prompt. I’ve never really been drawn to Cubist art, it’s one of the few styles I don’t have an affinity for. This poem, I took a phone from each era, cut it open and then reassembled in a collage. Each phone piece is represented by the story of a girl, not the phone itself. I liked your poem, taking the Universe and shrinking it down to human size.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, a difficult challenge. I am a painter, a trained artist (landscape mostly) but I am damned if I could make this prompt out. LOL! It was a head squeeze. We need more of these for growth, but damn. I need to read again, your poem and others here. I still have problems getting it in my head.


  2. What I like most is how you have used time as a way of showing the various perspectives… so much has happened between the Bakelite and the emoji… a telephone, and all the stories you can tell is a great way to use the prompt… and yes it has its challenges.


    • Hi Victoria. The last stanza starts with Alexander Graham Bell, Meucci was an Italian who could have been the first commercial telephone. The dissection of Bell’s invention in a Cubist manner, laying all the parts out naked. The quote from the first test “I want to see you” loops into Justin Beiber’s song “Where Are Ü Now” covered by Pentatonix which leads back to the beginning of the first stanza where the boy ‘wants to see the girl naked’ and after he passes around her picture like a bubblegum card, she wants to know ‘where is he now’, the point being that Bell’s phone is still at the heart of communication but with all successive improvements grafted on. You should click the link and listen to the song.


  3. I love this one as much as the needle one, Brian – hard to choose between them. I love the beginning and I kind of hear echos of Ruth Buzzi on Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In when she played the telephone operator – made me giggle – I used to do an impression of her – and the people on the bench – I digress! I once worked for British Telecom years ago and saw many changes. You’ve captured it all with panache!

    Liked by 1 person

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