Rebecca Black

Mephista Recounts Her Past Lives, or Nanotechnology

Newsflash, Missus—machines

have been invented

to invent machines.

I know you depend

on me to make your name.  

But before you plucked

me canopic, I peddled atoms

at the linear accelerator;

I kept myself in penny dreadfuls

by importing diction illegally.

After fencing with Herr Doctor

Faustus, after purely scientific

revelations, I came to

with this jingle:

“That’s what happens/

in nuclear fusion.”

Though I was orphaned

as Orpheus before you,

I’m no liar.  I trawled

and groveled rather intelligently.

Adhere to these warnings, Miss B.:

If you try to remove the blemish

from my cheek by chemistry,

correct my limp by a-mal-gams

I’ll dissolve and you’ll be dissolute.

But like a good child,

(Edgar to Glouster)

when you de-sire,

when you want to leave

me to history

I’ll take you to the edge—

what you think is the edge, is death—

watch you flounder

in the shallows.  I’ll hand you

the pistol after emptying the chamber.



“Mephista Recounts Her Past Lives, or Nanotechnology” first appeared in Conjunctions Online.