2 poems by Glenn Barker : The Infinite Personality Machine & Seaton Carew

photo from Unsplash.

The Infinite Personality Machine

The infinite personality machine
Nurture, nature, child and adult
Uniquely wired, uniquely you

So easily scrambled, rearranged
By childhood experience
Puberty, injury or trauma

Psyche and soma at peace, or war
The endless search to find your fit
Socially awkward or socially adept

Tuned in, tuned out or turned off 
By linguistic gesture, tongue and tone
Neural accord, discord, disconnect

Consolation and disappointment
Of language in metaphor
Thoughts and feelings, emotions

Through art, music, poetry, literature
The glue and thread that binds
How my mind works, your mind works

Certainty and uncertainty of language
Captured, collated, stored, retrieved
In literal sense, intuitive connection

Asperger’s, Autism or savant
Personality as neural diversity
A separate reality of this world

The infinite personality machine
Nurture, nature, child and adult
Uniquely wired, uniquely you

Seaton Carew

Seaton Carew or much further inland
The game is the same; innocent grooming
Turns manipulation turns coercion
Whether conscious or unconscious
One becomes jailer, the other prisoner
Far from Stockholm’s cold reach
But still a black heat of deception
Me for me, you for me, mind over mind

The big lie; you, puppet on my string
Whether I admit it or not
Calculated, this two-handed game
Domination over submission
My ends, with you as my means
Psychological or physical
Threat, fear, pain, be done to 
Behind closed doors, curtains drawn

Call it what you like, this syndrome
Stockholm or some other city, town, village
Suburban road or leafy avenue
Pretence, masquerading the self-seeking
Animal, cloak of inadequacy
No humanity dwells within this frame
Lies upon deceit upon delusion
A cold and empty dark heart

The wreckage of this prisoner, torn
Into too many disconnected elements
To glue back together whole again
Wounded in action, scarred for life
Written on the body, seared on a mind
That forever keeps the score

Bio: Glenn has only recently come to writing poetry, prompted by the isolation of lockdown to try to make sense of the fragile dynamics of the human psyche, and the emotional turmoil of human existence that shapes how we see ourselves and how we relate to others, as well as far less weighty comments on the folly of the human condition.