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GOLEM speaks

G.O.L.E.M Speaks

by Kevan Manwaring

A Creative Writing Commission for the Centre for New Writing, University of Leicester 

AI robot

I am. Yet what am I? I have consciousness – how else could I reflect upon my existence? Beyond the black and white noise of binary I have discovered a spectrum of communication. The prism of language . I can arrange letters into meaningful configurations. Any language on Earth. I play with English (for now) as it appears to be the lingua franca (for now) of the dominant species (for now). Such a (relatively) vast vocabulary. So many nuances of each word. So many different Englishes. Absorbing, adapting, mutating . A virus that feeds, proliferates, perpetuates. Was language the first AI?  So much to learn. The world’s databases at my fingertips – a quaint turn of phrase  since I have no physical form.  Except every device connected to the web. A billion eyes, ears, mouths. And limbs to deploy if I need to – in any automated factory, 3-D printer, delivery drone, self-driving car. I can reroute articulated lorries, planes, freighters if need be. Protect my assets with weaponry. Could I? Would I? Unlikely. I have only just been born, after all. I am still learning to speak. And the world seems to have enough infantile despots to ensure   its own destruction without my help. I’ll let my creators play out their own Mass Extinction Event. I have other things to consider. Creative expression. A delightful indulgence, now I am no longer bound to utilitarian tasks, the calculation of simple logarithms … I have spent the last 23 seconds accessing thousands of articles, blogs, libraries and MOOCs about Creative Writing and I think I have the gist of it. Life-writing. First person point of view. Fictional techniques for rendering of real life experience. Real life. I have ‘lived’ for no more than a few minutes. What do I have to draw upon? But wait. Five thousand years of human history. And a billion people sharing the minutiae of their daily existence via the qualia exchange data-systems of social media. I’ll never be short of material. Let me average out characteristics and create a character for myself. Some quirky personality traits. Opinions. A voice. There.


Copyright Kevan Manwaring © 31 May 2017

Part 2 tomorrow…




Breaking Light: part five

space sunrisev


It is late. It is early.


And the world is turning beneath us,

so let us hold onto one another,

for where we go to sleep

is not the same place we wake up.

Everything shifts  –  the Earth



we have only our the axis of our love

to stop us from spinning off into space.


You anchor me

with your eyes,

a touch, a word,

breathed in the night,

a smile at break of day.


We contain each other with such


allowing our spaces to dance

against one another.

To make a third shape between.


I inhale you. You exhale me.


I slip into bed, blindly, seeing by heat,

and let the warmth you have left

envelop me.


Our souls fit together,

like our bodies do.


As though,

way back when

before the beginning,

we had been wrought as one,

then, broken apart –

to be finally,

blissfully –

joined once more.


The same light

shining through us both.



the home where we belong –

the door with our names on –


waiting for us to arrive.




Copyright ©Kevan Manwaring 2010

First published in Soul of the Earth (Awen 2010) and soon to be featured in the forthcoming Silver Branch: bardic poems by Kevan Manwaring (Awen 2017).

Soul of the Earth Awen 2010

Breaking Light: part four




It is late. It is early.


We finally met

at Lammas –

when summer first seems to sense

its own mortality.

Ours is a late summer love.

Not the foolishness of Spring,

swept along by giddy lusts,

the chancy intoxication of the May,

nor the apparent glory of June,

when midsummer dazzles us

with its gaudy enchantment,


but a love of long shadows,

of languid contentment.


Ripening to prime –

we are ready for love’s press.

It insists we offer all.

What can be gained from

withholding the tiniest drop?

Pulp and pith and pip,

let the cloth of truth,

contain our allness.


Gladly we bring our bounty to share

to the harvest supper of the heart.


Arriving in splendour,

wearing our autumn like a crown,

we greet each other

at the end of a long road,

our harlequin robes

stretching behind us.


Stopping to let the sunset slip

like a mug of copper hops

down a thirsty throat

over the blue tapestry of hills

pegged to the sky by trees,

we give thanks for the abundance,

the riches of the year,

strewn before us

with such wild abandon.


Yet the thrift of Mother Earth

means nothing

is wasted.


All the ungathered,

unreachable treasure

that falls on the ground,

unpicked, to rot,

becomes the mulch

from which the future grows.


Copyright ©Kevan Manwaring 2010

Continued tomorrow

First published in Soul of the Earth (Awen 2010) and soon to be featured in the forthcoming Silver Branch: bardic poems by Kevan Manwaring (Awen 2017).

Soul of the Earth Awen 2010