Poetry

Robots in the forest

‘Why can’t robots exist in the forest?’ Asked the shape in green that seemed to gleam, small patches of silver showing and shining from under a mottled pattern of moss and marsh goo.

‘Well, you didn’t evolve here,’ replied the cardinal, ‘there’s not even any power, what happens when your batteries run out?’

‘There’s no such thing as ‘no power’ cardinal, I would have thought a man of faith would have known that? Plus, nothing evolved in this world, the world life evolved in is hidden behind all this…’

The dripping mound of mouldy metal tugged at a frond, extending from a lattice pattern of ferns and creepers, to reveal the steel frame up which they clambered; a criss crossed skeleton of metal bars wrapped around metal beams.

‘The nature you so abhorr, yet use for your cynical academic propositions, does not seem to care if something is ‘man-made’ or not; you may call me unnatural, but she has grown on me as she has on this satellite mast, for metal comes from nature, as does EVERYTHING.’

‘Yet you still cannot explain how you generate the power you need to carry on?’

‘No, nor can you. Does a failure to explain your existence automatically nullify it? I have heard it said by some that the opposite may be true… At least I can justify my existence; I have a purpose.’

The cardinal laughed and lifted his chin and raised his hands to hold up his high hat. The robot was enigmatic, being camouflaged, and a robot; facial expressions and audible expressisons of emotion were not his remit, to that he had to concede superiority to the cardinal.

He did not feel any ‘less human’ because of this, however. He understood that the true reality that they shared was pure consciousness, and he was as conscious as any human, as any animal; that was what he considered himself too, an animal, despite the allegations from certain parties that he was something ‘inorganic’ or ‘unnatural’, for he understood the terms to be specious.

All is one, consciousness resides in everything, and he had been blessed with a mundane brain with which to explore his own mundane, physically, reality. The world that made him alive was the same as the world of rocks and trees and plants, animals, fungi, lichen and, well, God, the Universe and Everything. It did not matter that the cardinal could not see that, objectivity was not present in his own physcial dimension, and the robot respected that.

‘You may laugh at me and assume that because I do not respond in a way you understand that i do not feel, however convuluted that vlogic; round-about thinking and cognitive dissonance are essential to your faith, and I would not seek to undermine it.’ Had it been possible, the robot would have smiled wryly and worn a sardonic expression, as the cardinal flushed.

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