The Robot Rejects the Notion

Metal and salt in my mouth
wondering at the biological sky
how the clouds would fit into my sockets.
I process love like rain: I stay inside
steel darkness and wait for it to pass,
my circuits sugarwater
and missed connection.


(originally published in 1001 Journal, Spring 2017)

Ender’s Game

We were children foretold to save the world.
We made love in alleys hidden from the moon.

We calculated the trajectory of movement,
fleeing into battle rooms of weightlessness
inundated with that floating feeling
of our necessary covalence.

In our battle room at night
you could not hear chirps
or hums of passing cars.
No one heard laughter change

to scorn, our mouths throttled with heavy.

I was too young to command.
In a way, the dark alleys orbited secret histories:
time haunting the ghosts of war themselves.

We were honored with medals, golden kisses
long after we gave ourselves naked to freezing water.

We became a star unaware of emitted light.
To touch was to will ourselves to sleep,
to die knowing we had always been at war,

every word a battle without the why.


(originally published in The Wagon Magazine, Autumn 2016)