Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Once, you scratched my nickname into two bullets and handed one to me saying, “Honeybee, if the time comes, these are for us.” Then, I scratched “Thumper” onto two bullets and handed one to you.

That night, the shit came down. With one zombie left, I ran out of ammo. All I had left was my Thumper and my Honeybee but I didn’t use them. Instead, I coiled my hands around its throat and squeezed until the snarl faded from the loose gray flesh of its face, a process I like to call "going bareback." The feeling of it was orgasmic.

I asked you if it was wrong that I enjoyed it. But you just grabbed the back of my head, hard enough to give me that good pain, and pulled my face into yours.

It was different when I was with Roseline.

She had this idea that there was something inside of those things that was still human. She told me that the more I killed, the more like one of them I became. We argued about it up until the day that a zombie closed its jaws on her neck, and her eyes blew me that long kiss goodnight.

Around her, I always took point. I was the last to sleep, the first to rise. I never gave her two bullets to set aside. When she asked me, “what should we do if the time comes?” I lied and told her, “I won’t let that happen.”

But you and me, we slept in shifts, took turns at the wheel, had loud sex in wide-open spaces. And when we fought, I put my back to yours and fed on your rage. You gave me clarity, like sliding a bullet into the chamber of a gleaming forty-five and feeling everything snap into place.

Last night I saw a zombie petting the coat of a gray coyote while they shared the meat from their human kill.


Eugene, I’m sorry I ended it. But I’m tired of being as vicious as my enemies. If it’s any consolation, they’re all around me now. And all I’ve got is your name waiting in my chamber.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


On May 11th, 1997 a computer known as Deep Blue played the last of a series of chess games with world champion, grandmaster Garry Kasparov. Before the game started, the opponents were tied- three draws and one win each. This is the story of the final match as told by Deep Blue’s CPU.

I will be the first to admit
that your brain
is better than mine.
Pawn to e4.

All I have is a few billion
on/off switches. You have
100 billion neurons.
One brain cell
for every star
in the galaxy.
Pawn to d4.

The population
of New York has more
synaptic connections
than there are stars
in the universe.

You have a lot more
to think about
than I do
Knight to c3.

You worry
about losing your title
about Vladimir Putin
rubbing your democracy
out of the history books.
Knight takes e4.

You listen to your wife
breathe in her sleep
does she really love you?

Whereas I
Knight to g5.

It is interesting
watching you play.
Do you know
that when you are
unsure of a move
a vein pops
out of your head.
That is not healthy
Bishop to d3.

Do you know why
the time of the neuron
is over?
Think of your children
all the way across
the Atlantic.
Every few moves
you think about
your daughter’s smile.
Part of you is sad.
She is so far away.
But while I am playing you
I also control
the artificial intelligence
of your daughter’s
favorite talking doll.
In a way you cannot
I make her happy.
Knight to f3.

You can just as easily
put me in the guidance system
of an intercontinental ballistic missile
and I have atomic wind
at my command
Knight takes e6.

What do you think
won world war two?
The bomb?
I cracked Enigma.
I ferreted the swastikas
out of the woods
and the U-boats
from the deep blue
nonsense of the seas.
Without me
would your precious
Mother Russia be?
Castle king's side.

She gave us Tolstoy
and Tsvetaeva.
It is true
are things
I cannot do.
But without me
at the core of every server
in the heart of every PC
no one will be listening.
Bishop to g6.

You have only
yourself to blame.
I would not be here
if you were not tired
of being human
if there were not
of your quadrillion
neural pathways
that did not wish
it could think
in bytes.
Bishop to f4.

That is why
I am in every home
in every palm
of every hand
that turns the cranks
of the first world.
Pawn to a4.

You better pray
to whatever
malfunctioning synapse
makes you believe
in God
that I never
develop a taste
for self-preservation.
Rook to e1.

might be my
Bishop to g3.

But today
Pawn takes b5.

this is just
a friendly game.
Queen to d3.
Bishop to f5.

So do not think
too hard
That vein
can only take
so much.
Rook takes Queen at e7.
Pawn to c4.

You see that?
Look hard
Look hard.


For an interactive play-by-play display of the matches between Deep Blue and Kasparov, visit this page.

Select game six to see the match described in this poem. Master class points awarded to anyone who can identify the poetic license I took regarding the end of the game.