Poetry from Chris Butler

Chris Butler is an illiterate poet howling from the Quiet Corner of Connecticut. He has published 8 books in his “Poems of Pain” (or POP) series, with 2 more soon on their way. In his time that is spared, he is also the co-editor of The Beatnik Cowboy literary journal, soon to release a chapbook with his comrade in the wars of words, Dr. Randall Rogers, entitled DEAD BEATS.


In this youngest day
of premature age,
our offspring are
the future, dying
in real life just to
become a cyborg.

Implanted with  
tracking chips,
plugged into
every hardcore port
before developing  
the ability to
read and write,

they’ll soon begin
thumb strengthening  
and mind devolution
by poking uteruses,
until every baby
is born with both
bionic and carbon
based parts.

In one generation,
one dumbphone  
will have more intelligence
than the entire population
no longer growing inside a tube.

The dumbphone
is far too intellectual  
than all the people
in all the known worlds.

Cellular devices connecting
to biological machines on a cellular level,
dismantles the DNA sequence  
downloaded from the first birth,
programmed with original chromosomes.

Intravenously attached to mePhones, mePads and mePods,
Because there is no I in me.

Facespace, Tweedy Twits, InstaGratifucationGram, Timber, GrindHer, Slapchat, WildVine, ClitCock, WeShat and BoobTube
steal our attention,
in order for our need
to seek attention
during each day’s detention.

The first tool of man was the stick,
a weapon of impersonal demolition.
The second tool of man was language,
a weapon of interpersonal devastation.
The last tool of man will be misinformation,
a weapon of mutually assured self-destruction,
bombing us in the form of a black monolith.

We are only woke when the mind is at rest, sleepwalking through protests of peaceful violence.

Memes are the cultural genes of any generic society,
with the power to hijack any and all social interaction,
spreading pamphlets from fiery zeppelins during propaganda pandemics without medical masks to keep our mouths shut.

Minds with master’s degrees in memeology see you as witticisms for idiots,
unknowingly inventing an army of sentient thingamajigs with simulated stupidity,
long before the incarceration of the one zeitgeist lightning strike…

…the almighty phone…

It tells us where we are and where to go,
how to get home down unknown roads,
connecting us with ten digits we no longer need to memorize,
cheats so people can’t tell that one can’t spell,
keeping contacts intact despite long lost distance,
nuanced destroying machines of an emotional emoji,
sharing opinionated commentary no one cares for,
with imposed guilt to keep us woke by invoking insomnia,
political correctness autocorrected before even written,
canceling a citizen’s existence once send is pressed,
and the only thing we can never leave home without.

Gradually, the dependency seeps into all of society.

Unable to initiate, copulate, maintain and sustain conversations face-to-face or voice-to-voice, but instead opting for text-to-text

Even when you shut off the shutter, the cameras are always watching, especially when playing solitaire while squatting on the toilet.

Facial recognition software knows us better than we know our best friends, significant others, domesticated pets and megaton nuclear families,
our privacy is eaten away at us like spam with a side of cookies, disguised as apps with no entrée to devour.

Instead, biometric fingers play the rhythmic keys of algorithms sequestering our unhealthy habits and isolated lifestyle from the rest of the real world.

Conversational swipes that smudge fingerprints from right to left on scratched screens to express which picture makes you want to sext dicks the most,
then conveniently hacked and on display as a C-list celebrity peepshow free to download for pubescent boys to continuously blow their load over.  

Some will even deepfake a new face of uncanny valleys onto the wrinkling skin of airbrushed lies,
the latest form of plastic surgery to propagate with or against the disinformation machine,
all of which will get my name prominently displayed atop every government watch list,

then unfriended by superficial friends
and unfollowed by lemmings just before the cliff.

In order to continue,
one simple click equals
a bound and gagged agreement,
an arrangement that forces
the user to read then reread
the slight variations to
terms and conditions
of the tiny fine print
hidden with invisible ink
between the lines,
forced to consent to
their blood contracts,
Issuing consensus to
corporate Satan to
torture you for
an eternity, or
until the next cruel agreement
when a download is required
from passing billboards of  
dangerously distracting QR codes,
the new and improved  
unbarred mark of the beast.  

From trolls demanding tolls for safe passage over the fiber optic bridges,
to masked bots masquerading as human beings whilst fishing for cats as they moan and piss into our drinking water from upstream,
it all seems to exist in a fantasy fairy tale indistinguishable from the extinguishment of reality.  

Even in the privacy of our own homes, as the old saying goes, we are never alone.  
Unwelcomed house guests disguised as girls named Alexa and Siri,
wear a spying wire unwarranted but governments, but the corporations in power,
pretending to be the global positions system’s guardian angel,
recording all of our priceless lives on permanent records
and selling access to our electronic existence and priceless debts to the highest bidder.

Drilling the mountainsides for zeroes and ones,
digging up bank accounts, social security numbers,
credit score cards, birthdates , mother’s maiden names,
emails, text messages and mapped out routes
where there are no canaries.  
Even single toothed prospectors in goldfields digging forty-niner miners take megabytes into counterfeit bitcoins
that were sifted by panning in the same digital streams,
until they create a crater called credit reports that strip mine us all,
and surveillance surveying what we’ll spend our life on buying next.

Until a simple butt dial from our back pockets exposes our secrets to not only the receiver, but any listener on
the same spectrum
on the other end…

However, even worse for the selfish is the selfies
facing the fate
of Damnatio Memoriae,

the deletion of a human being’s electric existence
by means of a search engine
and browser’s history.

This banishment from the grid
is in the coroner’s fraudulent report as social suicide,
but instead death was carried out by execution, quartering one’s texting digits in the cybernetic town square as the crowd’s six second creeper clips is cut down just as fast as it was pasted up.  

When you are persona non grata and your name is not even spoken of in dead languages,

and as your carbon-based footprints imbedded in the shore’s sand
are instantaneously washed away by eternal high tides,
no longer with a legacy to stand on.

United we progress toward a perfectly monitored society,
in the inherent anarchy of the year

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