on 26

he changed his surroundings and then
they changed him in a cycle that would
spit out each year for evaluation an
entirely unanticipated product

engineers could not figure out
this mechanism

“and here we see”
it was mused
“our 26th variant.
this organism which had built a hut
from dinosaur bones and aspired to
dominate its surroundings has since
put on considerable weight,
lost all appetite,
and lost all vision and drive.”

at what point
they wondered
do we cancel such an expirement?

never, said the boss
who colluded with the stars to
what ends no one could imagine

“let him stew in his own filth,
as he is doing now
and if he dies from it,
make note.”

“note down what?”
asked one of the engineers

“everything he ever thought and did”
said the boss.

“if we don’t get it right this time
at least we won’t have wasted data.”

the engineers scoffed at this idea

from their perspective,
this one organism had no worthwhile data
to note

the organism, however,
agreed with the boss
although neither of them
knew it. the 26th variant
would hear these things in
his sleep
every night
but could never remember
his dreams well enough
to break the endless cycle.

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One thought on “on 26

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