Tuesday, April 17, 2012

PAD Challenge Day 17

Catching up now! Today's Poetic Asides prompt is to write a science fiction and/or fantasy poem. NaPoWriMo's prompt is more complex: Write an epistolery (letter) poem to an inanimate object and include at least four of the following in your poem:
1. a song lyric
2. a historical fact
3. an oddball adjective-noun combination (like "red grass" or "loud silence")
4. a fruit
5. the name of a street in your neighborhood
6. a measure of distance

So here's my science fiction poem, with those other elements included:

Dear Desktop Computer

What a rush to see you again.
I remember when I was a little kid,
you took up half of my desk,
and rumbled, whined and clicked when
I slipped a disk into your lipless mouth.
It took seconds, even minutes,
to download the most basic data.
Still, you’d come a long way from when
those devilish saints, Gates and Jobs,
trucked out their first prototypes.
My dad used to recall how he was
the first one on Media Road with a PC.
What would he think of us all now?

As I got bigger, you got smaller – a pad,
a palm-sized phone, soon no bigger
than a raisin, and after that, nanobots
the size of red blood cells. We no longer
needed desks to put you on top of.
As we worked more closely together,
the lines began to blur. Kurzweil
was right, only things moved faster
than even he could have dreamed.

We’ve come light years since then,
and as I regard you, desktop, in
the antique store window, my irises
contract and click to save the image.
I tap my temple to access my data bank
and Googleplex you to see when you
were made. It’s hard to believe it’s been
just thirty years. You can hardly tell us
apart any more. Pink Floyd used to sing,
“Welcome to the Machine.”
Well, Machine, welcome to Us.

Note I used all six elements of the NaPoWriMo prompt: (1) song lyric: "Welcome to the Machine" - actually a song title; (2) historical fact (more or less): Gates and Jobs introducing Apple and PC; (3) oddball adjective-noun: "devilish saints"; (4) fruit: raisin; (5) name of a street in my neighborhood: Media Road (how appropriate!); and (6) measure of distance: light year. Whew!

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