Friday, 30 November 2012

Existential risk

The Greek and Roman gods have run out on us
leaving Makemake of the birdman cult,
only slightly dimmer than its sibling, Pluto,
and lacking – so far – in atmosphere.

Will our focus on things distant
miss the looming Pandora’s box
of  artificial intelligence?

Its very white ice is methane-filled
but at this greatest distance from the sun,
so far, it’s still frozen;

while behind telescopes, robots are escaping our control
pressing buttons, writing programmes,
deciding who lives and dies on the battlefield.

Perhaps Makemake, god of fertility
will shift axis, organics, seed the dark terrain,
create birdmen in the outer solar system,

while on earth, all that will remain
of the culled human herd, carved petroglyphs,
buried beneath bones and monuments.

© Afric McGlinchey

Distant Dwarf Planet Secrets Revealed

A Hennessy Poetry winner and Pushcart nominee, Afric McGlinchey’s début collection, The lucky star of hidden things,  was published in 2012 by Salmon.  Afric lives in West Cork.