Friday, June 02, 2006

Virtual Bard

The Internet. The zenith of humankind's technological achievement at the end of the 20th century. And how, pray tell, has this wondrous marvel of ingenuity benefitted us? As I peer into yon e-mail inbox I see that I can assist the wife of a former Nigerian dictator with a simple bank transaction and as a result earn enough money to end world hunger. I haven't responded to her, but she writes me every day.

Yet, even more astounding than that are the countless offers of cheap medications and stock IPO's. What is even more astounding is that these e-mails are written by robots. Oh yes, pure calculating machines of magnetic bubble logic that churn out random assortments of words and phrases in the thousands by the hour. I am told that these electronic brains do this so as to fool spam filters. Thus the email containing a virus or offer of stolen Viagara slips past the guardian watch of the spam filter in the guise of an actual message. Perhaps most of the random words written by these lit-bots is meaningless filler, but recently a phrase in one of these junk mails from a e-poet struck my eye. Catch your breath as you read the phrase below and behold the evolution of the computer soul! The digital master wrote . . .

I have seen her in the streets, he answered, with a shiver.
Meantime, I put myself on a short allowance of bear's grease.

Pure poetry. Forgive me but I seem to have something in my eye . . .

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