This is the official blog of Northern Arizona slam poet Christopher Fox Graham. Begun in 2002, and transferred to blogspot in 2006, FoxTheBlog has recorded more than 670,000 hits since 2009. This blog cover's Graham's poetry, the Arizona poetry slam community and offers tips for slam poets from sources around the Internet. Read CFG's full biography here. Looking for just that one poem? You know the one ... click here to find it.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Giant Iron Killer Robots are Key to Our Survival

I was asked to write this for the Tucson show Robots, Zombies, and Mad Scientists. I started writing this at 5:23 p.m. on the drive down from Phoenix to Tucson. I was the first poet up and by 7:43 when I got on stage, I was done. Awesome. I faced Mickey Randleman, who's opposing topic was "We must focus our resources on sexy teenaged killer robots." She had great boots.

"Giant Iron Killer Robots are Key to Our Survival"
On this stage, we espouse
“may the best poem win,”
because “survival of the fittest”
ferments in the gene pool of all living things

when the first tribe of ape-men hunters
fabricated flint tools
to enslave their nomadic neighbors
machines have dictated our destiny
and inscribed in their invention
is the machine mantra, “kill all humans”

iron tools were twisted into swords
long before plowshares;
steam engines manifested machine destiny westward
corralling Indians for easier genocide
rockets powered missiles and jet fighters
decades before they carried grandmothers south for Christmas

Morpheus warned us that
"We are dependent on machines to survive
and fate, it seems, is not without a sense of irony"
because the first machine to walk and talk
will carry a laser-guided anti-personnel submachine rail gun
not a spatula in a soup kitchen

The invasion has been gestating for decades
the Internet was a Defense Department project
despite its later usurpation by blessed pornographers

The evidence surrounds us:
a T-800 Terminator killing machine
now inhabits the Sacramento governor’s mansion
and if you remember
the last time an Austrian was elected leader
the human race endured a Holocaust
of unimaginable intensity and machine-like efficiency

that was just the pre-game show

although ignored by the mainstream media
the state of California is broke
because Schwartzenegger is siphoning tax money
to fund a secret Skynet
building an army of iron-skeletoned androids
with perfect skin, glorious physique and an inability to act human
Exhibits A, B, C:
Paris Hilton
Angelia Jolie
and Vin Diesel

We’re through the looking glass, people,
and Wonderland drops digital lines like the Matrix

pop culture tries to placate our defenses,
but the future won’t be filled with closeted droid lovers
like C3PO and R2D2
or Uncle Tom androids like Commander Data
the world of Wall-E was devoid of humans
because he hunted them down
luring them in with musical numbers
then crushing their skulls with leftover toasters
and whistling “kill all humans” as he rolls away

the future won’t be filled with
lovable louts like Bender
or benevolent behemoths like Bumblebee and Optimus Prime
our destiny is to be hunted in the sewers by squidy Sentinels
chased through dreamlands by sentient programs
named Agent Jones and Agent Smith
or sliced up by iron-fingered Cylons
nuking our cities on Earth and the 12 Colonies
in a Judgment Day annihilation
that will turn vaporize oceans and
turn deserts into glass

but the machines haven’t won yet
yes, billions we stare vapidly into glowing red eyes
during their eviscerations
but these are the same people who carry PSPs to church
quote issues of Maxim as scripture
or visit Wal-Marts like modern-day meccas

when the machines finally come,
if you’re not one of us who hear “kill all humans” in the subtext
then you’re one of them
people who are not ready to be unplugged
people are still a part of that system
so inured, so hopelessly dependent on that system
that they will fight to protect it

but there is hope
survival of the fittest will save us

when the bombs fall
a hero will rise
when they shout "kill all humans"
we'll shout back "we're still here"
Jesus Christ is coming back for the rapture
but you will know him as John Conner
even the initials are the same
John Conner with 12 disciples armed to the teeth
and the foresight that resistance is the only course for survival

when the world ends
at the barrel of Cylon guns
Commander Adama and Starbuck
will lead us from the interstellar valley of the shadow of death
to a new homeworld

giant killer robots may wipe out the weakest of our race
but their annihilation will merely shape the gene pool
into something bigger, bolder, greater than this flesh puppet now on stage
and in my dreams, I cry out
"I want to see gamma rays!
I want to hear X-rays!
I want to smell dark matter!
Do you see the absurdity of what I am?
I can't even express these things properly because I have to conceptualize complex ideas in this stupid limiting spoken language!
But I know I want to reach out with something other than these prehensile paws!
And feel the wind of a supernova flowing over me!"

the machines will thin the herd
to a more manageable size
but leave the survivors in a Zion
and give birth the next evolution of man

who can reshape this world as he sees fit
stop bullets with his fingertips
bend spoons as if changing a thought
Neo is no superhero
but the first neo-sapiens to speak on par
with Deus ex Machina

to all the giant killer machines
now preparing for Armageddon
bring it on
chant "kill all humans"
with your 1s zeros
we will survive you
we will bury you
and reach godhood
standing your broken chassis
and the our carcasses of our fallen marytrs


ColdContactKiss said...

10! (I hope you scored well in that room - You totally deserve it.)

who can reshape this world as he sees fit
stop bullets with his fingertips
bend spoons as if changing a thought
Neo is no superhero
but the first neo-sapiens to speak on par
with Deus ex Machina

^ My favorite part. :thumbsup:

herowneyes said...

We're through the looking glass, people,
and Wonderland drops digital lines like the Matrix

Nice. So how'd you do?

ATrueNorseman said...

I like the glorious ending, where the ability to die empowers us, beyond any capability of machine...

it's like the golden cross pinned to a warmachine
Very cool!