The Bubble – Oliver Purvis

the remnants of the dream drifting away

Many thanks to Oliver Purvis for his fantastic entry to Voices and the competition. Oliver is a Biomedical Scientist who lives in Cornwall and has recently rejuvenated his interest in poetry. We are very appreciative that he has decided to share his talents and we are sure you will enjoy reading ‘The Bubble’.

The Bubble

Air in water, expansion,
wobbling undulation
subsiding, equilibrating,
pressure equalising,
minimum surface area
for the enclosed volume.

The sphere – pure geometry,
defined by its boundary,
the non-space interface
where gas and liquid meet;
four-dimensional reality
enclosed by an abstraction.

Inside, continuous concavity,
a life of literal introspection,
centrally focussed, her inward gaze
barely distracted by fleeting fisheye
images beyond her outer limits,
spectral shapes shifting in darkness.

Occasionally she would wake,
trembling, the remnants of the dream
drifting away, recalled to the
deepest fathoms of unconsciousness:
the breathtaking, backwards-curving
thrill of being an Outside.

It was almost overwhelming.
Still, a part of her yearned
to know such an existence,
to commune with such a being;
a primal urge emanating
from her fundamental structure.

Unbeknown to either,
her longing was mirrored
in Outside’s ardent fantasies. 
He observed the world with wonder.
Marvels in every direction,
but Inside he could never know.

Embryonic intimacy;
perfect lovers’ symmetry;
total interdependency.
Antithetical; inextricable.
Divided by nothing,
a universe apart.

Oliver Purvis, Cornwall

Did you enjoy this poem? Why not visit Maggie’s website at: Maggie’s Centre Nottingham to find out more about their exceptional work and/or make a donation. Do you have a poem you would like to submit to Voices? Feel free to do so by email at: or via the ‘Contact’ page on this site.

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