An Original Poem, by Kathryn Cody
Maybe Yeats was right about that rough beast;
sometimes I think he sleeps beside me,
bent into a half-moon,
gentle angles pressed to my back,
murmurs muffled into skin curves.
This is the sleep of the Spiritus Mundi,
the hurricane eye of the gyre.
In the morning, he wakes to the sound of his phone
playing Beethoven’s fifth symphony, distorted,
a shrill anthem which punctures dawn with its tinny voice.
His thighs are thick, but not slow, William.
The layers are assembled with quick precision:
the three-piece suit, the power tie, crisp shirt,
His tablet with an inkless quill
which swallows words and
tucks them into pockets of atoms.
The automaton twists and jerks to every beep
and pop and whir from his mechanisms,
jumps to the vibrations pressed to his side.
He calls to “touch base” but there is no touching;
only the exchange of itineraries,
and you’d swear you hear him check you off.
When he slouches home, there is an almost
imperceptible trace of metal to his kiss,
almost a steel, hollow clunk to his laughter
as he greets you,
ignores the shadows of your smile that bounce
like bright lights off the shiny surface of his face.
Wires and wireless are laid aside,
Layers peel away,
the ceremony dims,
till only skin and bone remain.