The Aztech Machines

The Outrage Machine is in high gear,
mulching both lord and peasant alike,
grinding them up throughout the year,
ending whole careers at the first strike.
More efficient than a woodchipper,
farther of reach than a printing press,
it is akin to Jack the Ripper,
the bloodstains being a PR mess.
Nor are the cogs satisfied for long
and soon even the feeders fall in,
astonished that they, also, could wrong
but a little and pay for their sin.
Digital sausage is its mainstay,
the byproduct of its online rage,
it earns its sacrifices each day
just by being an anthropophage
because we love when Aztech machines
are bloody with the ink of all those
nobodies, losers, stars, teens and tweens,
celebrities, anons, hoes and bros.
Let them offer their ignorance to
enthrone us with our self-righteous wrath
so our dopamine lords can imbue
our brains with meager joy at each gaffe,
but bicker, too, in online comments,
the oneupsmanship among the hordes
in this incestuous comeuppance
as we vie for upvotes, Reddit awards.
It is a harsh reality, thus,
that a loose tongue can get caught in gears
which, once caught, never let go of us,
nor our families, friends, or careers.
So sit tall, lords, hunched over your screens
and feel pride as karma’s cogs grind on,
meanwhile beware the Aztech Machines:
a loose tongue cannot be withdrawn.

I Am Social Media, The Mob

(A modern reinterpretation of Carl Sandburg’s “I Am The People, The Mob”)

I am Social Media—the Mob—the tweet—the trend.
Do you know that all the distractions of the world are done through
me?
I am the idle man, the instigator, the selfie-taker of the world’s food
and clothes.
I am the audience that hashtags #mystory. The Kardashians come from me and the Trumps. They die. And then I trend other Kardashians and Trumps.
I am the feed going round. I am a blog diary that will gain a following. Terrible shitstorms
pass over me. I never forget. The best of me is plucked out and trashbinned. I never forget. Everything but Nuance comes from me and makes me twerk and give Likes for all I hashtag—and I never forget.
Sometimes I OMG, filter myself and trigger a few million hypocrites to remember. Then— I never forget.
When I, Social Media, yearn to remember, when I, Social Media, abuse the mistakes of yesterday and begrudge whom I mobbed last year, who played the scapegoat for me—then there will be none not offended in all the world say the name “Social Media” with any click of a post on their phone or any facebook status omission.
The mob—the tweet—will trend again.

.Com-Post

Chasing Will O’ the Wisps
would be more productive
than these dead, self-saturated
swamps of thought,
ideology being the stagnation of
Truth
without growth;
and so there stretch billions of
digital miles of
re-peat bog
as people plant the same seeds of
tribal belief, partisan posts
that have corrupted Eden
with web-arrayed weeds
just to add another layer
to the wasteland.
Even as they dig up
territorial turf
and let it air,
it still catches fire
as the stale, decaying
mouthfuls of morass
breathe
into one another;
meanwhile minds everywhere vegetate
into poisonous plants
which likewise never grow.
So much time and energy
tending rotten roots,
so much life
devoted to a barren horizon of
inert, suffocating compost.
It makes bogmen
of us all.

Hot Spotlight

What flower did not wither, too,
when under the magnifying glass,
the focused, scrutinizing rays
burning petals, stems, and the grass
surrounding it, hitherto
shriveling in that relentless gaze?

Nor can little army men
endure such a spotlight for long,
melting down as plastic sludge
despite however well-made and strong
while the lens focuses when
we critical children glare and judge.

And even an armored ant pawn
doing as its hivemind intends
cannot withstand that laser ray
while we, jaded, follow trends,
never reflecting on
how we may find ourselves burnt someday.