Tower in the Middle

To honor Foucault’s Pendulum (the novel), I am creating poetry from it – and in its spirit.


  • Open the physical book at a random page and point to a random place.
  • Pick a phrase touched by your finger tip. This becomes a line of your poem.
  • Repeat until it feels like the poem has ended. Re-arranging or editing phrases is not permitted.
  • Type the text and copy it to Google Translate. Translate to English.
  • Take the result and Google translate it to 10 other languages, each run is fed the result of the previous.
  • Google Translate it back to English.


The German version, directly from the book (1989 before all the orthography reforms):


Turm in der Mitte

Nicht um die ‘wahre’ Form der Welt zu erkennen
Der Saal füllte sich mit Licht
es wäre nie geschehen, was ich da geschrieben hatte
dann ade, auf Nimmerwiedersehen

die geheimnisvollen Schriftzeichen auf dem Felsmassiv von Ayers Rock
theoretisch erlaubt es die Eingabe von bis zu zweitausend Daten
wie überall, ein Netz von Gängen, heute in sehr schlechtem Zustand
die einen Satzteil bilden könnten

aber das oben ist eine chiffrierte Botschaft
Mit zehn Versen können Sie Tausende und Abertausende von Zufallsgedichten bekommen.
Eine alte Idee, typisch für viele Häresien in den ersten Jahrhunderten
nocht so, wie sie sein soll, sondern so, wie sie ist

vielfüßige Tiere, die sich in jeder Richtung bewegen können
hier werden die Etappen eines Plans skizziert
dort erfüllen sie nun Überwachungsaufgaben
Ich will nicht viel, nur die Totale Macht

ich erfinde nichts, diesmal erfinde ich wirklich nichts
Illusionen, dachte ich vorgestern abend im Periskop

Er bat mich ans Fenster
Eine Stahlfirma hat bei uns ein Buch über Metalle bestellt
sich daran zu machen, die Welt zu erobern

Ich habe jahrelang geschwiegen, ich kann auch weiter schweigen
vom Leben bis zum Tode
Auf dem Anlitz der jungfräulichen Künigin erschein ein schauriges Lächeln
zu erkunden
die Hand noch flehender vorgestreckt zu diesem unerreichbaren Glück

Und außerdem, sagte ich mir
er gleitet uns aus der Kontrolle
und sicher hatte er es getan
Wen man nicht schlagen kann, den muss man umarmen.


English version, according to Google:


Tower in the middle

Not to recognize the ‘true’ shape of the world
The room filled with light
what I wrote there would never have happened
then goodbye, goodbye

the mysterious characters on the rock of Ayers Rock
theoretically, it allows up to two thousand data to be entered
like everywhere, a network of corridors, in very poor condition today
that could form a sentence

but that is a ciphertext above
With ten verses, you can get thousands and thousands of random poems.
An old idea, typical of many heresies in the first centuries
not as it should be, but as it is

multi-footed animals that can move in any direction
the stages of a plan are outlined here
there they now perform surveillance tasks
I don’t want much, just total power

I don’t invent anything, this time I really don’t invent anything
Illusions, I thought the night before yesterday in the periscope

He asked me to the window
A steel company has ordered a book from us about metals
set out to conquer the world

I have been silent for years, I can keep silent
from life to death
A scary smile appears on the face of the virgin queen
to explore
the hand stretched out even more pleading to this unattainable happiness

And besides, I said to myself
it slips us out of control
and surely he had
If you can’t beat them, you have to hug them.


Final English version, after chasing the poem through:
Nepalese – Hindi – Finnish – Spanish – Slovak – Somali – Hebrew – Latin – Khmer – Maori
The title – Keskustorni – emerges when translating from Hindi to Finnish. However, Google does not recognize it when translating from Finnish back to other languages.



I’m not sure how today’s powers in the world are,
This place is full of light
Why else would I never happen again

Interesting in that regard, Rocky Ayers
Vision to release a pair of data.
Where it does, it does not do all the damage, it is considered the protection of the router network
He can pray

However, confidentiality
There are tens of thousands of passages of verse, and there are thousands here and here you will find.
False prophets are being proclaimed by the world.
He doesn’t have to, but anyway

Many animals can move
The growth of the program has been mentioned.
Still, it works
I don’t want to be addicted, just be strong

I don’t know if I ignored this part of the story
Yesterday I thought I was having trouble with the dream

I would ask if he was in the window
Mining companies want to metamorphose to metals.
You can do this and conquer the world

As long as we’re comfortable, I can’t keep quiet
Life and death
A huge smile appeared on the girl’s face.
Make it
But you stretch out your hands and pray for your joy,

Then I think again
This has shown us how to handle it
From there it is
If you can’t beat it you did it wrong.



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