Algo Poetry-Behind the Lines

“There is no other colour that is better than black,

There are many others that are appropriate and happy but those colours belong on flowers”-Words attributed to Massimo Vignelli- famed Italian designer and all the more startling, considering that they come from the creator of the colourful NY subway map and the very blue and red American Airlines logo.

Black, whether a heart or the intense black that night can become is the subject of today’s 38th incursion behind the lines of my debut collection, Be.AgaIN .

The piece begins by imagining a world or an emotional life without primary colours “like a faulty traffic light” and how “colourless and dangerous” that can be. The faulty traffic light soon leads to a colourless collision. We find our protagonist has no other choice apart from “Back to Black”. I could not resist comparing the rotation of a kaleidoscope with the heavy rotation of a song on a playlist.

The late Amy Winehouse is not the only recoding artist referenced as we meet the “Sound of Silence” in the next line and maybe say “Hello?” to the darkness.

And yes, The Beatles are also all over this work, I am happy to admit.

A line from “A Day In The Life” was stolen/ paraphrased for the second line. Nerdy, but not many might know that the -he-that “didn’t notice that the lights had changed” was in fact a Guinness heir ,and someone synonymous with Black and White encountering and fatally missing whether something was Green or Red. Yes, kaleidoscope also came from the same album and the famous “trip” that was Lucy in the Sky with diamonds.

Those readers interested in photochemistry may also be familiar with combining four elements and shaking it to produce either green, orange or red to produce a beaker sized chemical traffic light.

All of the above formed the work.

Colour has not only been stripped from our narrator in this never ending night, it also seems that structure and form has exited stage night also, and his mind is submitting to “shapeless spectres”.

The absence of colour finishes with a sun pun-“Mourning” has broken and “the sun so low”.

I wanted to leave a sense that day and it’s glorious technicolour was being squeezed out by the irrepressible night.

P.S. Yes, I am a walking cliché of a poet – I only wear black.



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