arcane electra

the robot staggered along the snow
outside the city limits
too much rogue programming
too many recurring loops
needed to execute to resolution
in isolation
in silence

the robot’s left side
was working well enough
but there were strange clicks and whirrs
a mechanical grinding
working down the right side

for there was held
a dimensional vortex
hidden pocket hyperspace
smuggled into earthbound realm
a velvet void
filled with blackness and stars
icy cold
clear and gold
some imagined treasure
vaguely known
but largely ignored by the robot
with future encoding instructions
not yet revealed for this particular time

a shaman had once tried to cut this away
with a silver knife
in front of a crowd of women
the robot had let it all happen
so weary of the burden was he
“what did you see?!”
the wisest woman present inquired
but it was too late
for it had already been cut away
by a white wizard spellblade

this was just a subroutine
the robot let run
it was assigned to a case statement
of alternate if..then conditions
case(infinity of);
repeat until (not_ok);
let everything = be_ok;

how long?
the robot wondered
before its bio suit was inactive?
how long before that cosmic initiation?
would this occur
within this existing robot body?
or some distant, shinier one??

the robot’s father was confined
to a mental ward
locked down because he tended to wander
purple AGG sticker on his hospital door
had a tendency to punch things when angry

no, not that program end routine
the robot decided
(five additional are withheld)
these were better functions to run

the robot felt a tinge of guilt its fuzzy logic circuits
frantically screamed to remind the robot
that guilt was useless..
perhaps a better robot
would bust its dad out of there
watch his movements 24/7
change his diapers
yell into deafened ear
the same answer
to the same question
every million microseconds or so

the robot’s mother had problems too
no longer able to keep up the pretences
of success of faith
a most peculiar piece of software
stuffed into wetwear after initial manufacture
but it’s true that
robots reach the end of their programming
every day

the faint whine of protesting gyros
snapped arcane electra alert
step.. whirrrr…
step.. click.. whirrr..
glide.. crunch.. glide.. crunch
that right side
always protesting
against the hidden burden it carried

fret ye not
beloved child
seems you’ve strolled
another mile

and the robot’s face
frozen sluggish
whipped by the frigid winter winds
crinkled into a smile