Reverberations: Between Screen and Soul

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This poem was in response to a word prompt of “announce”. So I thought I’d try something really crazy… and write a double-Sestina!

A sestina is a type of poem that has six stanzas, each with six lines, followed by a final shorter stanza with three lines called an envoi or tornada. What makes a sestina unique is its pattern of repeating words at the end of each line. The same six words are used as the end words in a specific sequence throughout the poem, creating a complex and intricate pattern of repetition that ties the whole piece together.

This poem leans towards psychological horror, as it delves into the mental and emotional impact of the constant barrage of announcements in a digital, modern setting. It explores themes like information overload, loss of privacy, and the dehumanizing effect of constant digital communication, which can lead to a sense of unease, paranoia, and a questioning of reality.

The horror arises not from traditional physical threats, but from the pervasive and insidious nature of the digital world infiltrating and overwhelming the human psyche, leading to a profound sense of disquiet and existential dread.

The first piece of this poetic duo, “Echoes Unleashed,” captures the relentless assault of digital noise that surrounds us. Imagine walking through a city where the pulse is set by ads and political shouts, a constant reminder of the world’s demands. It’s like the very essence of our humanity gets lost in the shuffle, overshadowed by the next big thing being announced.

Then, as if turning a corner in a maze, the second Sestina, “Whispers Within,” brings us inward. It’s about the noise, sure, but more about how it echoes inside us, stirring a turmoil that’s both personal and deep-seated. This part gets real—it’s about the silent battle we fight, for a piece of peace and clarity amidst the chaos that’s been handed to us.

At the heart of this experiment, is an invitation to reflect on how the constant “announcements” shape us, challenge us, and maybe, just maybe, push us to find a bit of serenity in the madness.

Echoes Unleashed

In the city’s embrace, where dawn’s light is shy,
Screens awake, their luminance bold, to announce
The onset of day, in a myriad of voices clamoring.
Each message, a ripple, becomes the ocean’s echo,
Filling every silence, every pause with its whispers,
Casting deep, elongated shadows upon the psyche.

Beneath the relentless gaze of each vibrant screen,
Humanity moves, a dance dictated by the voice
Of unseen heralds, whose declarations echo
Through the concrete canyons, a ceaseless announce.
In rare, fleeting moments, silence dares to whisper,
|A delicate rebellion quashed by the expanding shadows.

But in this orchestration of light and echo,
Where silence is a myth, ensnared by the screen,
There lies a truth, spoken in hushed whispers
That in every call, every shout, every voice,
Is a hidden plea, a deeper, more desperate announce,
Seeking solace, understanding, in the encroaching shadows.

As the sun arcs, its passage silent, unannounced,
The city’s heartbeats, captured in shadows,
Long for the tranquility of a screen unlit, a voice
Stilled, where the soul’s whispers might echo,
Finding peace in a tapestry not of announce
But of silence, a canvas vast, inviting whispers.

Yet, as twilight descends, the whispers are drowned,
Eclipsed by the night’s own version of announce,
Where screens morph into beacons, the shadows
Retreat, and the city listens, its echo
A symphony of desires, voiced under the guise of silence,
A paradox where the quiet is loud, and peace is a screen.

In this realm, where shadows dance with light, echo
Merges with silence, and whispers become the voice,
The city’s soul, amidst screens, yearns for a true announce.

Whispers Within

Within the mind’s recesses, dimly lit,
The word “announce” reverberates, a voice
No longer external, but an intimate echo,
A constant companion in the silence,
Whispering narratives that cast long shadows,
Entwining reality with the flicker of the screen.

The boundary blurs between self and screen,
As personal thoughts and public voices intertwine.
Announcements, once distant, now echo
In the corridors of thought, a relentless whisper,
Filling every silence with specters, shadows
Of doubt, fear, and a longing unannounced.

In this landscape, where every shadow speaks,
The echo of “announce” becomes a scream,
A cacophony in the supposed silence,
Where whispers morph into manifestos,
And the soul, besieged, seeks respite in the screen,
A paradox, as salvation seems to mimic the voice.

But within this turmoil, a new voice emerges,
Soft and subtle, a whisper in the shadow,
Challenging the tyranny of the screen,
Questioning the veracity of each “announce,”
Seeking silence in the echo,
A quietude profound, untouched by shadows.

In the dance of light and shadow, where whispers
Blend with echoes, a realization dawns, unannounced:
That the true voice, the essence, exists beyond the screen,
In the spaces between announcements, in the silence,
Where the self can whisper without echo,
Free from the shadows of the incessant announce.

In this quest for silence, where shadows soften and whispers quiet,
The soul finds strength, rebuking the screen’s seductive voice,
Embracing the echo of its true self, unannounced.

© Eric Montgomery, 07-April-2024

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