POETRY

April/May 2022

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Dear Robot

by Martina Litty

I will not ask forgiveness for your dismantling.
Blinking lights drowning in the twilight of my crowbar,
wheels punctured and deflating in their sighs: you
are dog-like in my readiness to put you down.
Crumpled screens and jaw soldered shut.
You whine at me. You were designed
to whine at me. You were designed to whine
and wiggle and “wag” your tail-antennae
to disguise the violations you were really designed for.
They want me to feel sorry for hiding my face
from those “soulful” little scanners they call eyes, but I
know better, know exactly which arms of the state
wield your leash, know exactly what corporate war
you hound us for. If I’m conditioned to ascribe emotion
to the motion of your twitching frame, let me choose joy.
You are saved by the short-circuiting seizures; that’s relief
Sparking off your body. Did I not promise to free you
from hilt and holster? I kept my promise. Dear Robot,
I release you. They cannot use you to hurt us anymore.

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Martina Litty is a poet from Laurinburg, North Carolina. She received her BFA from the University of North Carolina Wilmington in May 2021 and currently works as an editorial assistant for J&J Editorial. Her poetry micro-chapbook The Wall Where You Leave Me is forthcoming from Bull City Press. Twitter: @martinalitty