Automata on Display, Not Moving For Once





Iron-girt, tight as a rivet’s grip,

they stand between walls

and barricades.


Someone has taken care

to sculpt the eyes

with a hard gaze.


Once these were inlaid with gems.

Lashes in fine silver

lifted with the dawn. Torsos


shone in muscle and limb as if

nourished by ambrosia and nectar

in the ichor of the gods.


Robotically, they will dismantle

bombs, find survivors in wreckage,

or they may overthrow


human constraints, wipe out

systems, abolish structures, free

monsters from caves.



Mandy Pannett
Illustration: Claire Palmer


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