Friday 9 January 2009

Reality, for Tommie

A poem about friendship: I have a friend, whom I have never met face to face, but whose friendship is real. It is real, because it has endured - differences of opinion, changes in our lives, deep loss, happiness. We sometimes talk daily, sometimes sadly, once a month or even less. Sometimes we chat on the phone, more often online. Sometimes I have confided in her things I could tell no one else, and vice verse. Sometimes we just talk about nothing. This is her poem.

For Tommie; A poem about friendship

Shattered conversations, broken words,
glimpses of each other’s life. My words
rushed on a keyboard in work;
yours in a house with kids and dog.
Thousands of miles apart, heart to heart
across a continent, and over seas
through the ether, on the wire –
friendship spanning time and space.
Face to face, we’ve never been –
impossible to believe! I have held
your hand, felt your presence, seen
through your eyes…you have walked
city streets with me, sat at table, celebrated
family. How can it not be real?
We must redefine physics; ignore these
hard men who would say,
your friendship is virtual. Mutual
trust is real, laughter is real,
time shared is real. The only illusion
is theirs. We know, we know – Our words
are real.



Aisling the Bard said...

Interesting choice of words...because, for one in my generation, which pre-dates the computer age, "virtual" meant, "In actuality", or "in real effect", as "The Emperor ruled as a virtual dictator even though he had never been crowned." And so..."virtual" in the computer sense really means "as real as real"...and there ya go.

Anonymous said...

Aisling, very true. Virtual to me (who has immersed himself in techospeak from the age of 12) means "Seeming real, but lacking substance" and can be used as a an antonym of "literal" (e.g. "She says she loves him", "Ha! it's all virtual for her"). I had forgotten the older definition of virtual. Thanks :)

Geraldine Moorkens Byrne said...

Thanks guys :) I like that
"virtual" can mean either "as real as," or "not real at all" :) The poem relys on the fact that some people think virtual means unreal, and some can make reality of virtual.