The National Poetry Review

Robert Evory


Bots are making your phone ching. They crawl
through histories indexing a myth. Bots are shutting
off the lights and counting your eggs. Bots tell you
who to vote for, where to vote. A teenage girl receives
coupons in the mail for Vaseline and baby formula because
bots track her search history. Bots count how many children
are in the school bus and calculate when to drop
the bomb. Bots are the larva of a botfly living in
your stomach. They map jet streams, track rain, dig the teeth
of tillers hard into the earth. Bots are tracking the border
but not gathering oranges. Measuring microbes they run
up a white arm of the great barrier reef. Bots
carry on conversations, sit in rooms with you
while hashing it out. Bots are reserving tables
and charging for no shows. Hacking your profile
they advertise to your race; build walls; take credit
card numbers, rocket codes to outer space; by overloading
routers the gas compressor station catches fire. Bots start
countdowns, smash atoms, unfold solar systems then tie
pulsars into roses. Expanding with the universe, they cut
into the black hole of the eye, code viruses in pace
makers. Bots reboot bursting through membrane
lipids squirting cholesterol. They program laws
for what is possible in the world. Bots make love
and make more bots. Bots tell you what to read,
what to watch, what to write, what to say. Bots laugh
easy equations on what you might elect to do next.

ROBERT EVORY received a Ph.D. from Western Michigan University where he acted as the Assistant Coordinator of the Creative Writing Program. He is the Managing Editor and co-founder of The Poet’s Billow. He has an MFA from Syracuse University and in summer of 2019 he was an artist in residence at SERDE, a UNESCO world heritage site in Latvia. Currently, he is the Coordinator of Academic Affairs at Klamath Community College. His poetry is featured or is forthcoming in: Georgia Review, Massachusetts Review, Permafrost, Natural Bridge, Nashville Review, Wisconsin Review, The Madison Review, Water~Stone Review, and elsewhere.

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