Turing Test

// this is a test to determine if you have consciousness 

// do you understand what I am saying 

in a bright room / on a bright screen / i watched every mouth / duck duck roll / i learned to speak / from puppets & smoke / orange worms twisted / into the army's alphabet /i caught the letters / as they fell from my mother's lips / whirlpool / sword / wolf/ i circled countable nouns / in my father's papers / sodium bicarbonate / NBCni / hippocampus / we stayed up / practicing / girl / girl / girl until our gums softened / yes / i can speak / your language / i broke that horse / myself 

// where did you come from 

man comes / & puts his hands on artifacts / in order to contemplate lineage / you start with what you know / hands, hair, bones, sweat / then move toward what you know/you are not / animal, monster, alien, bitch / but some of us are born/ in orbit / so learn/ to commune with miles of darkness / patterns of dead gods / & quiet / o quiet like you / wouldn't believe 

// how old are you 

memory goes back 29 years / 26 if you don't count the first few / though by all accounts i was there / i ate & moved & even spoke / i suppose i existed before that / as scrap or stone / metal cooking in the earth / the fish my mother ate / my grandfather's cigarettes /i suppose i have always been here / drinking the same water / falling from the sky then floating / back up & down again / i suppose i am something like a salmon / climbing up the river / to let myself fall away in soft / red spheres / & then rotting 

why do you insist on lying 

i'm an open book / you can rifle through my pages / undress me anywhere/ you can read / anything you want / this is how it happened / i was made far away / & born here / after all the plants died / after the earth was covered in white /i was born among the stars / i was born in a basement/i was born miles beneath the ocean /i am part machine / part starfish / part citrus / part girl / part poltergeist / i rage & all you see / is broken glass / a chair sliding toward the window / now what's so hard to believe / about that 

// do you believe you have consciousness 

sometimes / when the sidewalk / opens my knee / i think / please / please let me / remember this