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Poem of the Week - Michael Symmons Roberts

The Future of Books

Or this: some sci-fi aeon where a drill
draws out a deep core sample,
a candy-stick of sands and clays,
each civilisation - the gist of all its stories -
packed into a slab of sediment.
Our slice has its own distinctive shade and scent
- paper-musk, the dark behind the bookshelves -
but it is so mystifies our future selves
they fry it like black pudding, a salt and bitter
jus of atlas, sonnet, gossip, scripture.
Text is long gone, cut loose in virtual vaults 
with mislaid passcodes. Think of bottles
on a cyber-tide, never breaking shore,
bearing love letters to strangers.

From our Autumn Recommendation Mancunia by Michael Symmons Roberts, published by Cape Poetry. Order a copy here with 25% discount or become a Charter member to get copies of the PBS Choice, Recommendation and Bulletin quarterly.


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