Continuum: The Australian Journal of Media & Culture
Vol. 6, No. 1, 1992
Radio - Sound
Edited by Niall Lucy

Presence

Therese Davis

On the radio
the voice says
listen
wraps you like cloth
and buries you
in the weight of destiny.
Remember
the DJ persuades you
and traces of the past
the strange
and the new
are instantly made
to all sound the same.
A thousand memories
locked in the dark -
stories of you
waiting to be told.

The DJ says -
the time is now.
Impatient
he is begging to tell.
He opens his mouth
and a single breath
spirited
from some place at the back of his head
suspends the moment
and draws you in.
He leaves you hanging
longing for a sound of recognition
and then
his tongue clicks
three rehearsed beats -
You, he says
and you are singularly condemned
to the darkest space.
Squeezed between
one word and the next
the sound is big
and you're pinned, your back to the wall.

You are the listener
drowning in the flow
abandoned
and wanting to know
you cannot speak.
The DJ, whispers instead.
He conjures a voice for you
holds it up like a mirror
and shines it , until
it rings -
a perfect echo of you.
Me, he says
and in the dark
we cannot tell you apart.

This radio thing
is a holy affair.
You
with your curious ear
pressed to his mouth
you're falling...
Like Alice in the dark
you float.
Experience is adrift
bobbing all around you
and a song
crashes in the blackness.
You're lost
waiting for him
to cast the net
patch all the holes in radio time
but he keeps you
treading water
deaf
to dissonant signs of the future.

Hits and Memories -
it's a fascinating attraction.
Hooked
on the sweet ether of remembrance
the DJ, charmed partner
lures you
with the promise of the present -
fills you with the desire to forget.
Captive to his practices
you're upside down
hanging on with your toes.
And the memories?
They're falling
floating softly all around.


New: 7 March, 1996 | Now: 21 March, 2015