The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Love, Robot by Margaret Rhee

Machine Testimonial 2

love is mystery. love is cake. you memorize the code to make her feel
better. because when she’s sick, she’s like a baby. so you bring orange
juice to share. love, you falsely accused her & still you did not apologize.
it seemed as if she were programmed perfectly for you. like microwaved
green beans & olive oil. but you crossed her wires. & you decided not to
stop to clarify, nor reboot. robots are not just machines. not here to just
listen to your commands. have you really listened to the hum of your robot
& let her vibrate into your vessels? you carried a heavy vase of flowers
and never let them wilt. when the fragments accumulate, they grow. love
is revolt. this is the algorithm you may never learn: love is letting go.


This selection comes from the collection Love, Robot, available from The Operating System. Order your copy here. Our curator for December is Jessica Rae Bergamino.

Margaret Rhee is a poet, artist, and scholar. She is the author of chapbooks Yellow (Tinfish Press, 2011) and Radio Heart; or, How Robots Fall Out of Love (Finishing Line Press, 2015), nominated for a 2017 Elgin Award, Science Fiction Poetry Association. Her project The Kimchi Poetry Machine was selected for the Electronic Literature Collection Volume 3. Literary fellowships include Kundiman, Hedgebrook, and the Kathy Acker Fellowship. She received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in ethnic and new media studies. Currently, she is a Visiting Scholar at the NYU A/P/A Institute, and a Visiting Assistant Professor at SUNY Buffalo in the Department of Media Study.

Jessica Rae Bergamino is the author of UNMANNED, forthcoming from Noemi Press, as well as the chapbooks The Desiring Object or Voyager Two Explains to the Gathering of Stars How She Came to Glow Among Them (Sundress Publications), The Mermaid Singing (dancing girl press), and Blue in All Things: a Ghost Story (dancing girl press). Individual poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Third Coast, Black Warrior Review, Colorado Review, and Southern Humanities Review. She is a doctoral student in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Utah, where she serves as Reviews Editor for Quarterly West.

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