I like it that they give robot babies to teens
to simulate parenthood,
that the robots are programmed
to cry unless they are held. I think
the teen mother has to hold them—no one
else can make them shut off—but maybe
I’m imagining that, maybe that’s a level of need
only real babies demonstrate. Because
a robot can’t prepare you.
Even if it cries all the time,
it isn’t wired
into your nervous system. You can’t imagine
the despair and rage snarled
within the besotted adoration
that tiny body wrenches from you
This is the blood vow,
the one you cannot break.
You can barely acknowledge
even to yourself, the force
of the urge for escape,
so that you’re lying if you say
you don’t understand
can bash a baby’s brains
against a wall.
you don’t do it,
but you understand.