‘Twa Pixels’: a poem by Philip Fried


    Twa Pixels

As I was walking all alane / I heard twa corbies makin a mane ...
              — from the medieval ballad 'Twa Corbies,' in Scots dialect


As I was gazing at the TV screen,
I heard two glinting pixels gossip and scheme
in whispers, apart from the venomous debate
exploiting fear and anger at our fate.

'I'm proud to play a minor part in the spectacle,'
confided one pixel to a brother pixel.
'Though only a dot, I thrive on populist fervor;
there's no doubt rancor brightens,' replied his neighbor.

'Humans invented us, and must be our God,'
said the first, 'but their omni-impotence is odd.
Some kill and some incite to mayhem and riot
but many are happy to watch this, passive and quiet.  

'Trapped like polar bears on tiny ice-floes
they view the calamatainment from their sofas.'
'Now they believe in us, our shifting swarm
whose rapid, hypnotic depictions thrill and alarm.'

'Who'd credit that the sinews of a gaze
could be picked so clean by flecks that dazzle and daze?'
'I almost feel pity as we teach them further
to call a crowd of pixels, like crows, a murder.'

'The Husband, Children, Dog, and Lovely Wife
lean back; they're lifelike statues deprived of life,
sweetly gathered in apartment spaces
so points of light can gobble up their faces.'


Philip Fried

About Philip Fried

Salmon Poetry, Ireland, will bring out Philip Fried's eighth collection of poetry, 'Among the Gliesians', in the spring of 2020. 'Twa Pixels' will appear in that book.