A Frontal Lobe Love Poem
by Glyn Edwards
Immediately after the battery has died
And the phone screen has turned black,
Sometimes, only sometimes,
Your face appears quickly on the glass.
And I don’t tell you this, and I don’t know quite why.
But the memory pulses when you say,
People’s lives don’t flash before them when they die,
You know? It’s just electrical activity.
And I nod and pretend to read.
A neuroscientist from an American university
Studied rats that were clinically dead
And recorded their brain activity
With EEG electrodes. At cardiac arrest
When their match-head hearts were stilled
There’s evidence of thirty seconds, no less,
That their frontal lobe lit up and oscillated.
You lean forward, your foot slips off the table
It suggests there’s a heightened consciousness-
that visions of your family, the whole Heaven fable,
is your brain reassuring you through the process.
The process of death? Of death.
And I don’t tell you this, and I know I should do:
When my heart stops I hope I’m lucid enough
That the remnant of my dying brain is you.
Romance is Dead
by Glyn Edwards
What’s a heart anyway? A beating root
lethal as a fist, or a baby’s skull
hung roughly on crossbones of ventricles,
some plumber’s sketch, a plate from a car’s log book.
Put your ear to a shell to hear it count time,
then tell me there’s no romance to dripping taps,
siren sound, dogs barking in hot cars, trapped,
or the heavy steps of a steady climb.
Iron Age desire was forged in the brain,
Celts felt lust in their guts, the Greeks a quiver
from a love lodged in the spleen, the liver,
you give me your lips, your lungs and your womb,
keep your heart, leave me your windpipe instead,
so it can’t ever be said romance is dead.
Glyn Edwards is widely published award-winning poet, based in Conwy.