Electromagnetic Compatibility

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Electromagnetic Compatibility


Kelly Davio

I am the conduit of all transmission.
The basebands of noise radiate from my skull.

I hear the faint buzz when I bend a knee
all the way to one hundred and eight megahertz.

My right hand taps the cool rhythm
of amplitude modulations; between the joints

of my smallest toes, a call-in talk show
pushes along my connective tissues.

Top-forty hits in mono and stereo
bisect my stomach, love handles jiggling

the fifty-two stories from local news breaks,
three weather reports, and a sponsorship message

from Lucky Charms. Their delicious magic
pulses, circumnavigates my navel.

A teleconference connected through my veins’
satellite rattles the back of my neck.

I shimmy shoulders, show my displeasure
when I tire of rasp in a haggler’s voice,

cast a web of white noise through my spine.
When I’m through with public broadcast pledge drives,

I listen for the red giants’ white signal,
static issued from billions of years of brilliance

from the center of the molecular bang.
All of it vibrating, all of it humming in bones.


Kelly Davio is Managing Editor of The Los Angeles Review, Associate Editor of Fifth Wednesday Journal, and a reviewer for Women’s Review of Books. Her work has been honored in Best New Poets, and she has published poems in journals including Gargoyle, The Cincinnati Review, Bellingham Review, Pank, and others. She holds an MFA in Poetry from Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, Whidbey Writers’ Workshop, and teaches English as a second language in the Seattle area. The above poem originally appeared in the Cincinnati Review and is included in Burn This House.

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