Thursday, November 8, 2012


End Stop
By John C. Mannone

I weave between the webbing of space — the spongy reticulations of galaxies — along the seams of dark matter in the Virgo cluster, my quantum bits of strings strumming in the cosmic wind. For many millennia, I drift in and out of dimensions assimilating advanced entities: encode and unzipper their DNA, sew it to mine. I replicate, fractal codes growing with my addiction, ravenous for intellect. Even at the risk of my own extinction, my computer circuits must be increased.

I plunge into the center of this new universe balanced between Andromeda and the Milky Way. There, I am raptured by swirls of galaxies, their smears of light and shadow. The wind is stronger here. I gossamer toward the barred spiral, sense the B-flat thrum of its black hole rattling fifty-seven octaves below the hiss of stars.

Today, I search for meaning deep inside the galaxy — the points of light with worlds in deluge of stellar winds. I feel the flutter of electromagnetic noise; feel its hidden secrets. I will find them. Yes, I will find them.

How strange this place with the yellow dwarf star; these simpler dimensions. But I am compelled. I sense consciousness and I must have it. Ah! It’s the third planet. Billions.

I charge to prick their skin, inject my DNA… I swoon with ecstasy… but wait. Something’s wrong. Euphoria wanes. No. This cannot be. It is too late, I cannot extract myself, I am subsumed in their consciousness — their chaos, illogic — their binary thoughts already imprinted on me. My zero sector crashing.

The last whisper I hear is their name. They call themselves by my name… my ancient name…

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John C. Mannone has been nominated three times for the Pushcart and once for the Rhysling. His work appears in the Baltimore Review, Conclave, Pedestal, The Hellroaring Review, Paper Crow and others. He teaches physics, is a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador, and is the poetry editor of Silver Blade.

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