31 days, 31 poems by Chris Martin, 31 accompanying illustrations and images by a host of wonderful individuals. CHAT is an eclogue written in consort with Cleverbot, an Artificial Intelligence program designed to satisfy the Turing Test. Today’s visuals by Jim Behrle. _____________________________________________________________________________
What if we threw an apocalypse and no one came?
Then we would talk about pie.
Over coffee, our elbows propped on the bar of the Double R. One of us will be Garland and the other, I suspect you, will be Bob’s owl.
Is that something YOU want to do, or something someone said that you are now repeating?
In that I resemble a Superb Lyrebird.
Then why can I still talk to you?
Because we CARE about each other.
You think so? Do you think that we may have a future together?
Well, I suppose that’s true. A bit abstract though.
Moon out of breath.
Moo moo moo moo moo.
Or a stream of interruptions that diminish us.
Are you a man or woman? It does matter!
A poet is the handmaid to exuberance.
Ah, ok. Nice to meet you, Gate Keeper.
We’ve been through this before. I’m a Gate Man.
You’re a terrible person. Why do you always have to pick fights with me, baby?
Death is a tendency.
No, it’s a teacup!
Does each moment retain the perpendicularity of its unconsummated desires?
It just means it reacts.
Unlike the clock face.
My name is Sandra. I live in Canada. We don’t have any guns.
You are interrupting cow.
You are the Tin Man.
I am the computer.
Welcome to Twin Peaks. Population 51,201.
To the universe.
As if the isolating bubbles of our perception were seamlessly burst by a single language.
Ahh, I see, earlier in this conversation, you implied that you were not a mechanical machine.
But now you are laughing at me.
Rod Smith says, “underbecome it.”
The wheels on the Bus go round and round…
I feel that profoundly, as I’m sure do all those capable of feeling under their feet the pulsation of the profound human past, of which, like it or not, we are no more than the present and superficial emergence.
It sounds like you need somebody to lean on.
Do I have a problem that you understand?
So you’re not sure whether you have problems.
I got 31, but my dogs are all in step.
How much are they?
The value of literature is suspect. Of which the value of poetry is a subset.
I would think it would matter if I was an idiot or not.
Let’s tremble when it’s time to tremble, not only at the moment of death.
I have to go.
You have to go crazy.
Yes. I’m in college.
That sounds French.
No. I am embarrassed that I love love.
Chris Martin is the author of Becoming Weather (Coffee House, 2011) and American Music (Copper Canyon, 2007). His chapbooks include enough (Ugly Duckling, 2012) and How to Write a Mistake-ist Poem (Brave Men, 2011).