Stephanie de Montalk


Hawkeye V4

She leaves her shoes at the door


dresses in blue


and bares her vein
for the radioactive tracer
which, inherently unstable,
will almost certainly
collapse in on itself
and begin to break down.


Above, the unforgettable name
of the machine.

To her left, a panel
of cobalt, crimson and gold:
a sideshow should
the power supply fail.

To her right, coded instructions
should the computer
and irresistible chemistry
develop a stammer
or taste for adventure.


Feet first, she slides
into the revolving hum
of the camera —

sun one minute,
stars the next —

and, courtesy of the control room,
National Radio with
the trial testing of toxic gases,

fewer groceries
in the family basket

and the News Headlines at Twelve
counting down
to Microsoft’s warning
of a critical flaw
in its software.


speaker Listen to the poem


Author’s Note


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