Todd and the Time Machine Part 2 (redux)



Part 1 can be found here.

Todd and the Time Machine Part 2

Todd’s basement materialises
he sees the dark wood veneer panelling,
that tartan colonial sofa his uncle gave him,
the dark patch where his uncle rested his head
still glistening from the oil slick of his uncle’s hair,
in the corner, his wife is playing with an electrical cord.
“Don’t pull the cord, I’m not fully back yet!” Todd screams.

His wife’s voice comes back
a little garbled by the time lag
“I hope you’re going to clean up that damn dust this time”.

Todd returns to the present,
presents himself and sneezes into his sleeve
leaving a black smear on his plaid Mark’s Work Warehouse shirt.
Unknown ramifications
unforeseen outcomes,
that 21st century air
trapped in the time capsule
drops to a lower carbon dioxide concentration
as the capsule travels back in time
the surplus carbon dioxide
reverts to the original carbon
forming a black dust
which coats the inside of the capsule;
thing is, it’s a one way process
no one knows why

“You look like shit”, his wife says
“You look time-wasted, you look timed out,
what happened to your hair?”

Unknown ramifications
unforeseen outcomes
time travel messes with your hair
alters your DNA
deletes your vaccinations
the dangers of rushing a technology to market
too soon.

Todd’s wife grins
“I wasn’t really going to pull the cord”,
she hugs him, grinding slowly
“What did you bring back for me, this time?”


The prompt from Laura over at dverse is:

“conjure an imaginary house of any size, any place, any age
fill it with an imaginary person/people past or present, or ghosts, or leave it empty with its history
make it literal but move into the metaphorical if you wish”

Thought I’d give this poem another outing.

9 thoughts on “Todd and the Time Machine Part 2 (redux)

  1. Laura Bloomsbury

    this was a brilliant read – love the details as Todd returns and takes stock of his familiar surroundings, the tartan couch, the grease stain from the uncle’s hair. Fun word play from the wife and I especially liked
    “time travel messes with your hair
    alters your DNA
    deletes your vaccinations”


  2. msjadeli

    “Unknown ramifications
    unforeseen outcomes,”
    Of course he wants to bring her back a pretty bauble.
    I was smiling, charmed, until that last line, which chilled me to the marrow!
    First class poeming, Jim.



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