Dialing Out To The Cosmos

Harmony

                                      Harmony by Dale Innis on Midjourney

Remember those rotary phones
that got thrown away when cellulars
were born?
How your finger hooked the ring
and with a bit of effort
dragged it all the way
as far as it could
letting you know,
Now you must let go…?

The satisfying muted number-clicks
then do it again
six more times
until all seven numbers were
dragged around
and you waited
and you listened.

Dialing out to the Cosmos
the wrong number
that could change your Life.
Dialing Out to the Cosmos
waiting to get those tests back
that said you were a winner
that you had bought more time.
That you were healthy in your prime.

The lucky chosen Rotary Dialer
every phone call was a direct connect.
No messaging“Are you free?”
Ring ring ring and you’d pick up
Stay there anchored to the phone table
or the closest chair, on a springy short cord
If you were busy,  they’d know it
they’d hear
the rhythmic buzzing of a bee.

 Dialing out to the Cosmos
“Please can someone help me?”
There is an emergency, a burglar, a house on fire,
Or, “Let’s call the neighbors and hang up.”
“Let’s call the boy next door,
listen to him say hello and hang up.”
Let’s sit all day in the same spot
look through the extra-thick phone book
and pick some random people to call.

Our index fingers have callouses
We take turns dragging that dial around
“Hello Cosmos, what’s the meaning of Life?”
Who made the first star shine,
the first prank call?
Dialing until our fingers are numb,
Why? What? How? Who? and……
Is there anyone out there?

Karima Hoisan
December 16, 2022
Costa Rica

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42 Responses to Dialing Out To The Cosmos

  1. This is my third poem in three days inspired by illustrations by Dale Innis:) A record!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. daleinnis says:

    I don’t know why WordPress isn’t letting me Like your posts anymore grrrr but I love this one (too)!

    Were you a Prank Caller? I can well imagine it, somehow! I never was, too shy and well behaved. But I like to think I’m Dialing Out To The Cosmos these days, even if it’s not on an Old Skool rotary phone. (I think we have one in the basement somewhere still.) Great verse remembering those simpler mischievous times.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hee hee we were a bit naughty:) But touch phones took that dialing fun away, even before cellulars to be more exact… Thanks Dale..Wow your art and my muse are conspiring behind my back…I am much more laid back than to write and post poems so…frequently..You both are wearing me out…(but I love it!:)

      Liked by 2 people

  3. kindfeelings says:

    I had a rotary phone that belonged to my grandmother and whenever my friends came over they called it old fashioned.

    Liked by 1 person

    • They were probably pretty right:) I think they went totally out of favor in the mid 1980’s, but we still had them in the 1970’s and I think just like your grandmother, mine hung on to hers into the 90’s:) Thanks so much for commenting:)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Grace says:

    Karima Karima Karima!!!! This freaking piece OMG…I am truly like in awe. I have zero experiences with a rotary phone (I’m an old soul so I really wish I had 🤪) but you described all the little detail so perfectly, I could picture every part. I love the thought of dialing to the cosmos, that is truly genius and taps into the cosmos part of all of us human souls. Dale better keep illustrating so you can keep these magical pieces coming!!!! This was such a treat to read, thank YOU. Love it more than I can say.

    Liked by 2 people

    • WOOOOTS:) You made my night Grace:) We middle-agers if we didn’t have one in our house, our grandmother’s did:) The irony here is this is not really a rotary phone, I suspect, but when Dale first handed it to me…I could see nothing else:) It looks like a supernatural, surreal rendering of one, but my muse was captivated and off I galloped behind her..:) I myself would love a direct dial to the Cosmos..I still have lots of questions:):) Thank you for this most enthusiastic comment…I am a bit in awe, that three of Dale’s illustrations, sparked three poems..that is a major record for me:):) So glad you have approved and enjoyed them all:) Aww you are so sweet!! 🙏🌹❤️🌟

      Liked by 1 person

      • Grace says:

        Awww you’re more than welcome, dear friend!!! After I read the piece I looked at the image for a good minute and I could totally see how you got “rotary phone” out of it…such a creative mind!!! I have more than enjoyed every one, truly 🤍

        Like

  5. jsimpsonpoet says:

    Well. That was very enjoyable, original, fun and a little bit insightful. Thanks Karima.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much Jay…I’m glad you found it enjoyable:) The only thing I could see, when I first saw this illustration was a cosmic rotary telephone. I think it probably was meant to be something else, as it’s called Harmony. I can see that too…just a lovely inspiring image:)

      Like

  6. KK says:

    What a nostalgia! Thank you, Karima, for reminding in such a beautiful way. Today’s generation will never realise the thrill of pains and happiness that we have undergone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahh so true Kaushal. Dale’s images have been very inspiring for me lately…and when I saw this one, it bought back a flood of nostalgia:) We also lived in Costa Rica without electricity…only one phone in our small town at the General Store (La Pulpería) but my Grandma was in the US so when we went back we had the modern rotary and touch-tone phones:) Luxury!!:) Thank you so much for commenting:) 🌹

      Liked by 2 people

  7. How can I forget the days when you picked up the phone and waited for the operator to ask you which number you wanted and then waited for the connection to be made. I hated the rotary phone and the early mobiles without a screen, if you were interrupted you would forget where you were with the number and have to start again. In today’s world I am sure they could make a comeback though. Imagine picking up the phone and the operator asks you whether you would like to select a number or whether they should select one for you. That could be very interesting. A lovely write. I did enjoy reading it and thinking wow, I am even older than those times.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much David for your comment and for sharing your own memories. As I mentioned above we had no telephone at all in Costa Rica in the 70’s and into the mid 80’s as there was no electricity. All my memories of rotary and touch- tone phone were when we visited my grandma in the US.
      “the operator asks you whether you would like to select a number or whether they should select one for you.” Wow…we are very far now from these times.Wonderful to have these moments recorded in our memories:)

      Like

    • Ahh… David… if we begin to walk down the avenue of age, we would feel we are back in yesteryears Hollywood, and listening to the immortal words… ‘…Rosebud.’
      🇯🇲🏖️

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Jeff Flesch says:

    I love this idea, and the nostalgia you are playing with here. There is a form of happenstance with the old school rotary phones that you don’t get when your numbers are all preprogrammed into your phone. Mysteries are so much fun too. Wonderful poem, Karima. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Jeff, so glad you enjoyed this idea that came to me from this illustration. Truly, it was much more hit n miss but for me, coming to
      ‘civilization” every year to my grandmothers, even rotary phones were a luxury we did without in Costa Rica, before our area had electricity. It’s all relative:):)

      Liked by 1 person

  9. swadharma9 says:

    “is there anyone out there?” thats what aricebo was all about too: dialing out there in hope someone would pick up. i guess we are still doing that in our various ways.👁️👁️🚀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Navin says:

    Wow, what a beautiful poem…you took me back in time when these phones were the only ones…the majestic phones with dials…zero number has always been special…even in these phones…coz one had to wait patiently as they covered the max degree of rotation…that sound & that slow anticlockwise rotation…fascinating…Dialing out to the Cosmos…I simply love it…that’s the magic of your poetry…you tune in to something deeper & give it a poetic form…I’m literally seeing this mesmerizing image on my inner screen…such amazing art by Dale…keep such beautiful pieces coming, dear Karima 📞💟

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you my friend..I found myself riding a wave of imagery produced in my mind by Dale’s wonderful illustration. I love the detail you added..how satisfying it felt to dial and enjoy the whole turn of the dial…the countable of 10:) Was a poetic love affair at first sight, when I saw that image. In the last 3 days this has happened 3 times, to 3 different images…Everyone as diffeent as the poems they produced…highly unusual for me, but I am so grateful my muse is vibrating with AI Art:) I so enjoyed your comment and reflection my friend. 🤗🌟🌹

      Liked by 1 person

  11. stolzyblog says:

    Best thing about them was you instantly knew and could feel how the one you were speaking to was doing exactly one thing at a time, got no ancillary texts, had no call-waiting interrupts, and stood in one spot, not driving or shopping. It was paradise, relatively speaking.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ohh so true.. you raise wonderful points…We had not fallen into the multi-tasking while talking on a phone insanity…this came later in our smart phone days…which I have a feeling might be making us dumber…Why learn anything, if we can just look it up on Google..again and again. Yes, we were anchored to our calls:) Different times and wonderful to be able to remember them:)

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Such a delightful poem Karima. I loved the rotary phone and we still have a few! 💗

    Liked by 1 person

  13. calmkate says:

    awesome write … with a deaf mother we used the phone box down the corner eg no phone at home. This limited boyfriend chats and nuisance calls, but we still had fun!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Bridgette says:

    Another really powerful piece. I particularly loved the lines:
    “Who made the first star shine,
    the first prank call?”

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I remember those phones… then we were prisoners of the home, or the office, or an ‘oasis’ somewhere on the road… now cell phones makes us prisoners everywhere… once we thought the body had enough cells… now we carry a cell in our pockets…!
    🇯🇲🏖️

    Liked by 1 person

    • Laughing, and you’re right, we’ve added another cell, that has made us lazy , addicted, non communicative face to face, rude at a dinner table…I think it most ways, it was better before. Thank you for this great reflection on my poem:) I really enjoyed it!

      Liked by 1 person

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