Saturday, November 16, 2013


image borrowed from bing


“It has become appallingly obvious that our
technology has exceeded our humanity.”
--Albert Einstein.

There once was
this halcyon period when science
fiction was ensconced 

in pulp magazines,
comic books, fantastical literature, &
many lunatic asylums;

just bug-eyed
monsters whose fierce fangs dripped
with murder &

mayhem, earth portrayed
as this dusky gem ready
to be plucked

& plundered, just
nasty alien creatures who wanted
the earth’s unpolluted

fresh water, or
endless natural resources, just megalomanic
hordes wanting to

enslave mankind for
their own nefarious dreams & plots;
mysterious mother ships

of every configuration,
hovering malignantly over earth’s greatest
cities, just randy robots

running amok, from
vicious vacuum cleaners to towering
metallic warriors shooting

lethal lasers from
every blinking orifice--and yet
after centuries of

conjecture, the fiction
is wearing thin and the
science has integrated

itself deeply, profoundly
into our homes & our
daily lives, like

lascivious lichens, like
callow carcinogens, like idiotic ivy;
busily smashing atoms,

breaking helix codes,
while extolling the virtues of
nuclear power even

as we fear
its instabilities, using science to
smarten our weapons,

shrinking our spinning
planet by letting a plethora
of satellites orbit

our immediate outer
space--serving the media; embracing
new technology as

we would a
new lover, letting it provide
a lusty hunger

for the sensation
of constant stimulation, welcoming it
blindly & fervently;

compelling our youth
to glue their attention to
their phones, notebooks,

watches, & laptops,
wearing headphones, never looking up,
wandering the streets

like asinine automatons,
becoming completely addicted, dependent, hooked,
their insights blunted, 

obsessed--overloading outdated
power grids, overstimulating 
heretofore undiscovered cortical provinces, evolving

into some kind
of cyber-lemming, blissfully unaware
of the camouflaged 

cliffs they march
toward, as too many of us,
boomers & crones,

feel left behind,
excluded, out-of-touch, labeled
as luddites, wearing

self-consciously our
fading expiration dates, watching fearfully
as the youth

rush headlong ahead
of us, oblivious to the 
greedy fiends who

are the sentinels
of the sensorium, the perilous
programmers, the cryptic

keepers of the
kill switches, invisible restraints &
the control rooms. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets Poetics

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?


Brian Miller said...

it is scary how much science fiction has become reality...makes you wonder what is next...surely the evil empire is there as well...smiles. new mind control in techno addiction....

Björn said...

Glenn.. the reality of it all.. was Science Fiction just a few years ago, bar the space imagination could not imagine the thing we do today.. fortunately the poetry's still there (greetings from the high Vogon) ...

Mary said...

Ha, even science fiction some years ago would not have included everyone (not only youth) wired to all their devices. It is a whole Brave New World, and its REAL LIFE!

Heaven said...

Fantastic lunes Glenn ~ This verse specially resonated with me:

as we fear
its instabilities, using science to
smarten our weapons

Gabriella said...

As I said to Björn, the devices we now have remind me of Asimov's short story 'The Fun They Had'. It is almost no longer Sci-Fi and the story is not that old.
We do sometimes feel we are losing our humanity. I wonder whether the younger generation is so aware of this though. said...

This is dark, scary, and unfortunately, way too close to home. The tone was just perfect, to my ear.

aprille said...

yes, you're so right: it's no longer simply fiction, but bizarre, incongruous and frightening reality.
Succinctly put and to the point.
Don't want to think about it, but it has now become inescapable.

annotating60 said...

We have feared the future and it is us...>KB

Morgan/ said...

So amazing, definitely your genre :)

Lane Savant said...

Yeah, all that mass that used to be on earth and is now circling at high altitudes is like a spinning skater extending her arms to slow down the spin. Is this why our days are getting longer?

Laurie Kolp said...

Amazingly vivid and sci-fi-like! I especilly like-

lascivious lichens, like
callow carcinogens, like idiotic ivy;
busily smashing atoms

beckykilsby said...

I really enjoyed the shape of this, the inclusion of lists, the alternation between short and long lines - all of which, gave a strong sense to me of time passing and the powerlessness of the narrator.

Mystic_Mom said...

Shudder. A timely warning, and one that will probably go unheeded. Well done my friend. I'm thoroughly chilled!

hyperCRYPTICal said...

So well done Glenn.

We have become what we feared others would bring...
Anna :o]

Shane Shier said...

There is only one word I could use to describe Technofirma that word would be "FUCK" I am in awe totally in awe. Bravo!!