Engines Within the Throne
We once worked as clerks scanning moth-balled pages into the clouds, all memories outsourced except the fuzzy childhood bits when I was an undersized girl with a tic, they numbed me with botox I was a skinsuit of dumb expression, just fingerprints over my shamed all I wanted was snow to snuff the sun blades to shadow spokes, muffle the drum of freeways, erase the old realism but this smart snow erases nothing, seeps everywhere, the search engine is inside us, the world is our display and now every industry has dumped whole cubicles, desktops, fax machines into developing worlds where they stack them as walls against what disputed territory we asked the old spy who drank with Russians to gather information the old-fashioned way, now we have snow sensors, so you can go spelunking in anyone's mind, let me borrow your child thoughts, it's benign surveillance, I can burrow inside, find a cave pool with rock-colored flounder, and find you, half-transparent with depression.
From Engine Empire: Poems by Cathy Park Hong. Copyright © 2012 by Cathy Park Hong. Reprinted with permission of W.W. Norton. All rights reserved.