Artificial Intelligence
To G. P. S.

Over the chessboard now,
Your Artificiality concludes
a final check; rests; broods—
no—sorts and stacks a file of memories,
while I
concede the victory, bow,
and slouch among my free associations.

You never had a mother,
let’s say? no digital Gertrude
whom you’d as lief have seen
Kingless? So your White Queen
was just an “operator.”
(My Red had incandescence,
ire, aura, flare,
and trapped me several moments in her stare.)

I’m sulking, clearly, in the great tradition
of human waste. Why not
dump the whole reeking snarl
and let you solve me once for all?
(Parameter: a black-faced Luddite
itching for ecstasies of sabotage.)

Still, when
they make you write your poems, later on,
who’d envy you, force-fed
on all those variorum
editions of our primitive endeavors,
those frozen pemmican language-rations
they’ll cram you with? denied
our luxury of nausea, you
forget nothing, have no dreams.

— Adrienne Rich, 1961

Review of Bonnie Bilyeu Gordon, Songs from Unsung Worlds: Science in Poetry
by Ralph Dumain

Cybernetics & Artificial Intelligence: Ideology Critique


Adrienne Rich
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Uploaded 22 October 2019

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