The Other Truth About Brains
God formed man of the dust of the ground,
breathed in the breath of life—though
unto his brain he stretched a horn.
Good idea. I am a rhinoceros of thought.
But I want to be like the jellyfish,
or a sponge without any nervous system at all.
I am sad. In the pockets of
GM has employees driving cars away.
And the lots are empty
except for those radiant puddles
of fluid, as if the cars wet themselves as they went—
afraid or nervous or perhaps hostile.
The sponge can grow back where it is broken.
I can, too. I eat cereal all day
and grow everywhere like a bush.
The stomach is the brain’s dumb buddy.
Tell me something useful right now.
I am a free-floating mammal
under the budding medusa of the frontal lobe.
I have a lot of good ideas.
I write them down. I should patent them.
I smell tangerine
on the tips of my fingers—
It is the brain’s good advice to smell this.
Eat of this, the stomach says.
And the brain is a naked old man
crouched in the skull, growling back:
I have meat that ye know not.
Brief Communication with Earth
We have some sad news
this morning from Mars.
The robots are silent. They want
their astronauts back. Send
anything you can, chocolate
or wool socks. It’s bad.
They’re playing SimCity,
eating freeze-dried toast,
shitting screws and springs.
The bald volcanoes make terrible
views. These are machines,
not men. They need their parts
rubbed with oil. Send what you can.
A dwarf star hangs
like a bulb ornament
just on the horizon.
The planet is blushing furiously.
The robots are listening
Orson Wells—tricked again.
They’re listening to a hundred
names being read, slowly.
Send more movies. Send
women. Get us out of here.