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Sunday 31 May 2009

Breaking News : 2050

We're getting breaking news in from Baghdad...
two bodies perfectly preserved in sand...
discovered... that's unearthed... three years ago,
the news released this morning. Dating from
the dawn of man, they are by far the most
intact, the oldest and most thrilling find
yet made. A meal, their last, was taken from
their stomachs, analysed and found to be
red grape - and something that perplexed the ex-
perts for a while, now thought to be a form
of apple, quite unlike our modern one.

I'm looking at them as I speak; they bring
to mind discarded snake or lizard skins,
part stained, sun-dried, part bleached. In other lights
they might be dressed in leathers for a ride.
To where? Perhaps to where they were (it might
appear) so intimately whittled out
of marbled ivory by ripples in
hot sand - but then again, these blotchy things
could take on almost any form you please:
exotic fruits, all moisture sucked from them,
their wrinkled skins diminished, shrunk and posed
as foetal forms, like doodles see-through thin.

Displayed for cameras, they lie as they
were found, their fingers linked - they'd thought in sin -
in Baghdad's Palace to the Modern Man
where scholarship and science now begin,
and out of which two eerie facts emerge:
despite their difference in gender terms
they share a single DNA; and he,
for all his wholeness, lacks one floating rib -
removed at some point, cleanly, with a God-
like skill and with no trace of scar or wound.

This week we screen three Specials from our Talk
is Cheap
discussion series, featuring
professionals from many walks of life
including faith and science, airing views
on topics such as; What Do We Not Know?
and Does this Make a Difference? and Is
There Evidence For This As Evidence?

© David King


The Weaver of Grass said...

These finds are so exciting Dave - for many reasons. I love the way the experts can piece together so many aspects of their distant lives. I find even picking up a pebble gives one a link with the past - there must be so much beneath our feet about which we know nothing. I had not heard of these two.

Unknown said...

Excellent poem-- very thoroughly imagined & realized.

Tabor said...

Makes me feel so insignificant and small and I realize this is very possible in teh future chain of life.

Shadow said...

there are many things out there, waiting to be found...

Carl said...

Hi Dave,

I want to read this one a bunch of times. Excellent. It makes me think we need to question everything we think we 'know' and also begs the question what happens between now and 2050... More of the same, apocalypse etc.

Now I am off to paint for 8 hours with an awesome view of the Hudson at the Tappan Zee out of the studio window.

Great post

Stephen Dell'Aria said...

A future that turns everything we think about life on its head, is all that we can hope for.

Jinksy said...

Have you been watching the TV programme about the forty million + year old fossil? Or are there really another couple of excavated wonders I've missed?

Laura Doyle said...

Fantastic! Love it beyond explanation. I've been studying ancient Vedruss culture...the one that has been intentionally buried and mostly forgotten. This seems to go hand in hand with my thoughts on it.

readingsully2 said...

You always surprise me. :)

Karen said...

Wonderfully imagined, Dave! This is so real that I had to go back to the title to reassure myself that it was imagination! You're a most amazing man!

Rosaria Williams said...

At first reading, the poem connects all the dots. What I want to know is: Is the last stanza, paragraph part of it?

I enjoyed the allusions to grapes, apple, Adam and Eve, and to the mess that is now Bagdad.

Michelle D. Argyle said...

Very nicely done! It certainly caught me off guard for a moment. :)

Leslie Avon Miller said...

You always make me think – a good thing. I love that you had their fingers intertwined. Human touch and connection even in death…..

Rose Marie Raccioppi said...

The real, the perceived, the conceived... the marvel of creation... the many faces you so aptly reveal. Applause!

Dave King said...

The Weaver of Grass
Thanks for that. I do agree with all your comments, and no, you wont have heard of them - but you might!

John Thanks for that.

Tabor I guess we're all insignificant and small when it comes to it.

Shadow ... or not found, as thecase may be

Carl Hi, yes, I'm sure that's right, we do need to question. Have a great paint! I can't remember
when I last painted for 8 hours. V ery envious!

Stephen As long as we have the strength for it.

Jinksy I've recorded it, not watched it yet. You haven't missed anything!

Dave King said...

Starlene Yes, I can see possible connections. Thanks for the comment.

readingsully2 And me!

Karen It is just imagination - for now, but one day, who knows....?

lakeviewer Yes, it's part of the TV news cast. Thanks for the comments.

Lady Glamis Very much appreciate the comment. Thanks.

Leslie I'm pleased you liked the fingers entwined bit. I wasn't sure, though I was pleased with it myself!!

Rose Marie An extremely poetic response. Thanks.

LR Photography said...

Great post Dave!

Ronda Laveen said...

I, too, liked the fingers intwined line. Touching each other. Touching us through time.

Dave King said...

AdrianThanks a lot.

RondaThanks for that bit of feedback. Most useful.

A Cuban In London said...

For a whole stanza you had me, dave. I admit it. I thought really that it was a news broadcast. What a fantastic poem! The penultimate stanza has such a strong line 'despite their difference in gender terms they share a single DNA' that is a joy to read.

Many thanks for sharing this with us.

Greetings from London.

Unknown said...

Hi Dave,

Would you Adam and Eve it?!

David Cranmer said...

Absolutely superb!

Dave King said...

A Cuban in London Wow! I didn't set out to fool anyone, shall have to watch myself! Thanks for the feedback.

Derrick I'm not sure I would... not absolutely!

David Many thanks for that.

Cathy said...

So exciting to read an imaginative person's vision of our future in anthropology, excavating and examining the minutia of everyday lives of those who came before, and of course, us - when time has allowed that we are of more value to future study (ironic isn't it lol) Back to your scenario, the shared DNA bespeaks of their inherited genomes, siblings perhaps - hence intertwined fingers might suggest they knew (or planned) death was at hand and wanted to remain close, a very primate-like trait in a social context. That missing rib - removed as you proffer in your dynamic, excludes birth defect. But "God-like" skill? This might be an easily-understood dismissal of those higher arts known and practiced by the ancients. Fossils of our forebears show such detailed intricate surgical skills including delicate cranial invasions, leaving no visual traces, with their vast knowledge of the healing power of plant extracts and herbs. Or perhaps in that time (which you call "the dawn of man" so I assume you're putting this discovery in a date near 240,000 yrs ago? but it's your scenario lol) as you say it was "removed" - could the culture dictate that a young man was expected to found a patriarchal lineage and his rite of passage was the loss of a rib? Many women did it for cultural dictates in the last few centuries, so rituals sending boys into manhood makes as much sense, yes? To give up something of himself (why not a rib, I hear it's been done in a familiar legend) Your vision is so full of points of interest and thought, only 40 yrs from now. Imagine what lies yet to be discovered beneath the soil, or preserved in ancient monuments, to be discovered in not 40 but 1,040 yrs! Enjoyed your futuristic scenario in prose.

Hootin Anni said...

Howdy!!! I don't think I've ever visited with you before. I love the whole concept of this post ....altho the year is 2050 it's still amazing....and boggles the mind with such in depth composition.

Thanks for the visit today.

Andy Sewina said...

Hi Dave, what we didn't know, we do now, or perhaps in another forty years time. I like the way that you wrote this, as a breaking news report. A case of what goes around comes around.

Roxana said...

this is so good. i always like the way you combine deep and thought challenging topics with irony and subtle humour.