Alan Harnum

Issue 17


God is like day trading by
the water’s edge, snowblind.

God is like the crocodile
bird, retiring on a low income
far from home.

Maker, an enduring wilderness
damages; maker, one of us is lying.


Source & Method

There’s a website ( that monitors a live feed of anonymous library catalogue searches, running them through voice synthesis. I listen, select phrases from the feed, and assemble them into poems. All words/spelling preserved, but I may repunctuate; each poem is from one “listening session”.

Alan Harnum is a writer and software developer in Toronto, Canada. He has been previously published in Issue 5 of Unlost.

Photo by David Clarke 

As Boys and Girls Settled Down With Armouries By Alan Harnum

Issue 5
  1. Waiting for the Races

“Kill as you go” former street chess wizard
Joe Smolij advises Wellesley.

Hospital receptionist Joy Scott on the plan:
“Now for healthy, tasty turkey­overs,
computers are wave of the future. But do we
all need them buddies?”

Margaret Thatcher and
Brian Mulroney share more
than a high regard for each other!
They also enjoy catering to people who
play with computers as a pastime.

Is John Crawford’s business Crawford?

Right, is president splash down? He
lands in Lake Ontario, just offshore
the falls of Niagara.

  1. Good Weather for Flying

Sleep­in of 150 Yorkville hippies
in front of City Hall began last
night as boys and girls settled down
with armouries.

Woodstock: a woman sobs in anguish.

Outside Weston Collegiate, where
frantic parents gathered, pollution
rom coal plants will dump millions
of tons of acid.

On Canada, attack and counterattack
featured the confrontation between federal
and provincial leaders at the constitutional.

  1. People Who Play With Computers as a Pastime

Deep in the heart of
one four nuclear reactors
at Pickering power station,
technicians prepare tubes
that will burning of the
Rossin House.

Toronto view from York Street 1862:
British land army, business block
cobalt limestone quarry.

Milton, if ye break faith we shall not sleep.

Buy victory bonds, major oil companies!
Officially? Opposed to cut ­rate, no­ frills
service stations; sometimes find it expedient
to fuel rods.

Pickering: employee checks fuel, rods on
reactor. Anthony Westell objects to
receiving letter from birds miscellaneous.

  1. Kill As You Go

Hamilton, the Birmingham of Canada;
the Manchester of Canada;
Oshawa, illustrated;
waiting for the races, Grimsby Beach,
the pride of Canada; Spuzzum River
from Cariboo Road; the Mint; Ottawa;
Canada. Main Street. Markham, Ont.
Canada. Post Office. Strathroy, Ont.
Canada. Lynnhurst Swimming Lake.
St. Thomas, Ont. Canada. Toronto from
Hanlan’s point.

Parliament buildings;

Good weather for flying awaits these

Canadian armed forces jets at Trenton
air base, which were to take part in the
Bird’s­ eye view of Victoria, British Columbia.

Sunnyside. A sailor gets a resounding victory kiss.


Source Text: Joseph Bloorg Twitterbot (@tpldbot)

Alan Harnum is a software developer and former librarian in Toronto, Canada with an interest in how computers help, alter and impair the creation of art. Much of his free time is spent writing, usually (for better and/or worse) on a computer.