The Future is a Perfect Something or Other

Let me tell you a story from the future – it’s about
A wonderful new chemical called
This miraculous innovation, thanks to child labour
Comes cheap, a buck nine, in chalky tablets and
Translucent pills.
It’s what’s going to save the world, without a doubt,
From those neo-Nazis snorting coke in our backyards,
From the smack-ridden whorehouses on 7th,
From books on bombs and bombs in books.
It’s the future, and let me tell you,
the future is packaged somewhere up the hill,
concocted in musty boardrooms that smell like
Circulated after play time and tetherball,
At noon when the kids are the roudiest,
In Ms. Mary’s kindergarten class
Room 666
at the Highwood
For Amiable Girls and Boys.

The second the large cardboard box of the stuff
is dropped off opened,
Let me tell you,
Its taped edges sliced and diced,
All sweet Hell breaks loose
Like a giant fucking bomb dropped to incinerate
Inhibition, exposing the soft fleshy underbelly
Of single-minded naked need need need.
Bloody noses, smudged faces and a pair
Of broken glasses
(they belong to a little girl, half-deaf, named Gladys –
she is weak and asthmatic,
can’t hold her own in the jumbled jungle
of Ms. Mary’s kindergarten class)
tell us that the place is open for business,
that little minds are ready for educating,
that the future has arrived in pretty
bottles endorsed by Superman and
the Power Puff Girls.

red ones, blue ones, pink ones,
capsuled bliss, every color under the sun!
Fights break out as tiny hands
Form fists
they scratch
and claw
and tear at one another like
Koalas in the midst of an adrenal high,
Possessed by an unconquerable, saliva
Drenched urge to consume, with a side of fries.
‘Come one, come all, there’s plenty,
plenty to go around!’

(There isn’t, of course, enough to go around,
because the bigger
boys and girls take handfuls for
themselves and leave precious few tablets
for awkward children like Gladys. Let me tell you,
it’s not a pretty sight,
but it’s important to weed out the weaker one’s,
Neo-Darwinism for dummies.)

Once all have had their fill
(except for Gladys),
Ms. Mary opens the top drawer
Of her large metal desk,
(it’s her turn now, why should she be deprived?)
Removes an imposing needle nearly a meter long,
Licks the tip for good measure,
Then plunges the damned thing so
Fucking deep into the rubbery
Flesh of her left thigh, with such force that
Her heart almost stops; once her innards
Turn into amiable jelly and her
Body’s joints begin to spray from stretched
Oxygen clogged pores
the shimmering liquid,
The lifeblood of one who sees God on Primetime,
Channel 17 for those with cable,
The lesson can continue, because
By now,
The rest of the room is silent,
Pupils sitting in desks, shifting in and out
Of time as driblets of freewill fall
From rusty nostrils to the tops of desks,
Making happy little pools of obedience.

The future, let me tell you – the future swims
In those murky pools of snot hardening
On the desks in front of sedate vessels of lethargy.
The future is like your first sunset – perfect.

All is quiet, as I say,
Except for Gladys, rummaging through empty
Bottles like a feral
Rat, licking powdery residue from small cracks
In the floor’s shiny tiles.
She’s still hissing, moaning, groaning,
Working on a tank half full,
Her blood itching for that last tab,
That last hit of ‘Sweet Jesus’ and
‘Fuck me, I’m on cloud nine!’
In about ten minutes she’ll go limp,
Her tiny body will shut itself down,
And only that special special
For now a buck nine, limited time offer,
(better buy in bulk!),
the future, clinical insanity made available
to the general public and hidden for our own good
in cheese and bread and lemonade,
Will be chewed by Ms. Mary
And regurgitated into Gladys’s face,
Only then will the little girl’s itching stop,
Will her pesky experiential stream of consciousness
Cease, letting her vision cloud as her lips whisper
Only then will she take her seat like
A Goddamn decent human being,
And we can finally get this fucking class in
Proper working order,

But until then open a big bag of popcorn
And enjoy the future,
While Ms. Mary oozes around the classroom
like hash pudding,
Teaching your kids to worship the
Dollar sign.


It’s an unflattering pose -
on my knees, hands clasped
feigning piety,
as she sleeps, naked,
the small of her back
still wearing
a slick coat of sweat,
while I whisper words that
just might be
into a slim navy pillow stained
conspicuous white blotches
of my own

A native of Edmonton, Alberta, A.D. MacDonald spends his free time
selflessly promoting Alberta beef, following the wisdom of the Almighty
Turnip, and writing. His fiction and poetry have appeared sporadically on
the internet and in print, most recently at, or forthcoming in, Thieves
Jargon, Bewildering Stories, The Café Irreal, Blackheart Magazine, Lost in
the Dark, Bloodcookies, and Bust Down the Door and Eat All the Chickens.

© 2005 Underground Voices