Colony of Copper Men by Jennifer Ruth Jackson

His copper skin scoured shiny
By eons of desert sands
Glimmered like a metallic ghost
At the bottom of the oasis

Master crafters, unable to create
A heaven from their workshop
Wiped silky oil from under
Their optic sensors

Motherboards calculated his age
How long, they reasoned, it took
For the madness of longevity
To curl up inside processing chips
And not relinquish

The wisest wished for lifespans
Closer to those of the carbon-based
Sentient meat sacks in the galaxy
And the uncertainty of their endings


Jennifer Ruth Jackson’s work has appeared in Strange Horizons, Liquid Imagination, and more. She, her husband, and her houseplant live in an apartment in Wisconsin where (two out of three) play video games. Jennifer has yet to beat her plant in any gaming session.

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