Detection

lucidaAn electronic pulse indicates
Life is supported, if uncheered. Her eyes are taped,
While field boundaries are traced and recorded.
Is there anybody there?

Fish, dog, monkey, driving the car.
Consciousness is scored on a sliding scale.
Daydreaming, life drawing, man, woman, machine,
A target only in transition. Like walking, a lifelong fall.

Beneath her calm face, a long dark sea loch lies thoughtless and still.
Until what looks like a female mallard
Swims ahead. Driving a personal wake.
Piloting a purposeful wave, just like ducks do.

Light glints from the rippling surface as water
Bobs up and down to carry her wave.
Is it like the tell-tale’s flicker on a salt taught sail,
A breath of quickening close on the wind?

If imaged and transformed will the waveform reveal
A message planing across unknown fathoms?
As a conductor’s baton, a tiny boatman keeps time.
Only up and down, up and down, in rhythmic vertical pulse.

Like the boatman the wave is carried dryshod
By wetnesses swollen with missive intent.
If a sudden hail shatters the loch, both will be lost.
Only silent water can sound her whispered wake.

Complexity simply favours the quiet mind.
In the distance is there a gently muffled quack?
Do sensors of mere matter twitch in far off envy?
Oh, yes. It certainly sounds like a duck.

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Inspired in part by work of the physicist Max Tegmark on consciousness as a ‘fourth state’ of matter. (good Opinion piece in New Scientist also, but you need to be registered)

About stevedsmart

Steve Smart is an information designer, poet and artist. View all posts by stevedsmart

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