15. Robotic Pet

Clenched fist holds pumping heart hostage. I want a robotic pet. I want to forget to feed it and watch it not starve. I want not to put its stiff corpse in a ziplock and toss it in the dumpster behind the building. As though it were a sofa.

I want to get home from a hard day’s struggle and be greeted by my robotic pet holding my slippers and a plan for world domination. I smoke a pipe while I read the newspaper and prop my feet on my robotic pet.

When I have a bone to pick. When I want to chew the fat. When I droop the lean. Coiled around the trunk in the garden, my robotic pet breathes. Too obvious? Get your own goddamn robotic pet.

On Saturdays, I shave my robotic pet. I take the trimmings and make a forthright virgin. The underbelly seams. Clicking and squirming in clockwork synchronicity, my robotic pet slathers its chops and glistens like the path not taken.

It wags its tail with the force of an exploding refrigerator. It freezes the sun with its glass-eyed biological jellybean stare. It goes walkies at the crack of dawn. It howls at the moon with the voice of ten thousand years. While you sleep, it waits.

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