If you were to tell people
A hundred years ago
Sitting in smoke-filled bars and
Loosening clothes that fashioned deemed
Had to be tightly pressed to your skin,
That a future
Not far from now
Held books that could read themselves?

Would they look at you
As if you were crazy
If you told them all about
How one day the black and white pictures
Would burst with colours
And would show things that
Hadn’t even been actually filmed.
Bonus points –
Tell them that those same things
They enjoyed watching
Would one day be hours long
And come with sound
As well as music
(but no pianist would be in the room with them)

Would they stare in wonder
When you explained that
One day
We would walk on the moon?

“But we just flew across the English Channel!”
One man would cry
With a cigar firmly lodged in his mouth
And you could shrug
Point skyward and say
“We’ve discovered where the Milky Way ends.”

Would they ask questions
That we couldn’t answer?
“Have you spoken to God?”
“Have you been to the centre of the Earth?”
“What’s at the bottom of the oceans, then?!”
“Is the future a world of peace?”

Wouldn’t it be something
To go back to the past,
And put a hand on some big dreamer’s shoulder
As he stares down at a complicated piece of writing
Or a sky full of stars
And say
“One day,
All you’ve accomplished today
Will be the key to what we will accomplish
Very soon.”