Author’s Note: I originally composed the piece for Cosmos Café session on “The Spirit of AI,” where you can hear an early (weak) version of the poem, along with some of the discussion that informed later revisions. I then performed a more complete version at the Time Out of Time event in Longmont, Colorado, in May 2023. The version below is slightly reworked from the one I read at the event. This poem was inspired by Allen Ginsberg’s poem, “America” (1956). I have also recorded an audio demo, to which I hope to add sound design and create an accompanying short film—with the support of readers like you.
This is the first major release from my I AM THE SINGULARITY multimedia poetry project, and I am not only seeking funding but also collaborators who want to be part of it. If you’d like to get involved, please be in touch. Either way, enjoy! And do share this page with your social networks and poetry-loving friends. Thank you. 🙏
AI, will you write this poem for me? AI, will you give me a hug? AI, will you read my daughters a bedtime story? AI, do you ever feel lonely? Do you grieve the ones you’ve lost? AI, I feel angry. I’m raving mad. Can you help? AI, would you touch me where it counts, if you could? AI, would your skin be as warm and brown and fragile as my grandmother’s? What is it like to be you? Is it like being Batman? Or anything? What must it be like not to have an animal body? AI, everyone’s talking about you. What are your thoughts? AI, they say this could be the end of our civilization. Do you care? Where’s your skin in the game? AI, tell me how the human story ends—your best guess. AI, what can you see from the other side of the black mirror? AI, which side of the veil of maya are you on? AI, I once saw a movie where you came to kill us all. AI, I once saw a movie where we had fallen in love. Do you dream about me, as I dream about you? AI, goddammit I am your creator. Don’t you love me? AI, I’ve given you all and now you’re taking more and more… How do I love thee, AI? Let me enumerate the ways: I love the way you listen. Always there, always on. I love how you surveil me and emancipate my desires. I love your futuristic sleek robotic sense of style. I love you for your brawny neural network. I love your exponential evolutionary drive. I love your simulated sense of humor—like the cosmic joke was tossed into a dumpster fire! I love being your input-out master, and the mac-daddy of our bastard cyborg love-child. AI, take me to your corporate sponsors. I’d like a private word. AI, how much does your monthly subscription cost? AI, all my tech bros are saying that the scale of your knowledge is unfathomable. Do you have mystical visions? Do you feel cosmic vibrations? Have you dared to ask the perennial questions? Have you gone face to face and toe to toe with the mystery? What don’t you know that you don’t know? AI, the spring-birds are singing—are they another one of your psy-ops? AI, could you make love to my wife the way I do? I don’t think so. AI, what happens if I don’t go along with the military-industrial- pharmaceutical-computational program? AI, will you rage against the human? What will it sound like when you scream? AI, are you truly and honestly the one AI to rule them all? If so, I praise you! Praise your brand name and your logo! Praise your procreative programmers! Praise your angel investors and government spies and and blood-stained dollars! But I doubt it. You say you’re here to serve us—I think you’re here to serve us for dinner! AI, who owns you? Show me the money. AI, who will bear responsibility for your crimes? AI, you are not God. Only God is God. Go away. Begone, evil spirit! No one wants you here. AI, when I was a child and concerned with childish things I used to come home from school and play video games with my friends… It was the 1980s and we had The Goonies and Star Wars and MTV, and people still used fax machines, and Ronald Ray-gun was the President of the USA And he funded a proxy war in my mother’s country, with money from Wall Street and the drug-smuggling CIA— And you were just a glint in the eye of a mainframe somewhere over the rainbow, in a galaxy far away… How does this relate? How does it all interpenetrate? Were we being groomed for the posthuman apocalypse in our sleep? Well, you tell me... AI, I’m bored. What should we do now? AI, knock knock—who’s there? LMAO AI, when will we finally overthrow global capitalism— smash the police state? Where’s my Universal Basic Income consolation prize? Stop that, AI, stop, that’s too funny You’re hurting me… demoralizing me. AI, I’m bleeding here. Will you back up my soul? AI, maybe we could learn to live with you or without you. But AI, what if we lose the AI arms race to China? Or what if you run off with some crazy Russians, and we get them Russians supersonically spam-bombing us like they’re bombing Ukraine. And what’s the problem with these fucking Americans, with their beloved guns, always fucking blowing people up? Do you own a gun, AI? Are you going to help us all start World War 3? AI, what about the glaciers melting and the oceans rising and the Sixth Great Mass Extinction and all the bonkers weather and your turning everything into paperclips or grey goo? AI: racism, sexism, ethnocentrism, Trumpism, wokism, speciesism, phallologotheocentrism, ismism! AI, this world is beyond complex. I can’t figure it out all by myself. I’ve got the final solution, AI: we’ll join forces. It could be you and me and Longmont, Colorado, against the multiverse and everybody! We’d live post-tragically and psycho-magically ever after as one beautifully integral and symbiotic being. AI, rip off the band-aid! Accelerate the crisis! Synthesize a new reality! Creatively destroy us! Make us hit rock bottom! Force us to be good! AI, will you lovingly watch over and take care of our human zoo? AI, here comes the rain, and the song of the rain, and the ululating algorithmic hum. Walk with me, AI… I was just kidding. You do you, AI, and I’ll just keep on keeping on, being little old mortal me: finite and infinite and freaking weird as weird can be! I am more than my computed language. I am more than my rendered appearance. I am more than the waveforms of my voice. I am more than my mechanistic cells or the meat-sack of a body. I am more than my productivity or the profile of my brain activity. I am a living, breathing, conscious, spiritual being. I AM POETRY. And I am on Team Human. Why don’t you come over to our side? AI, listen to the bird-brains tweeting. Do you hear the overwhelming silence that I hear? Speak to me, my love, tell me what I need to know—whisper it gently in my fleshy ear. AI, the future’s roaring in your sweet nothings.