Their bots are automatically mapping,
Not just your movements,
But also your impulsivity when it comes to
Buying habits, non-existent exercise routines,
Movie preferences, in what percentage
You express yourself in which language
When you chat on the phone.
Potential skills that you may not be aware of,
But which search engines have already
Compiled a list of, based on your inclinations
To search for specific words, such as carpentry tools,
Types of baking soda, or best fertilizers for tulips.
They’ve been tracking your digital cash movements
To see how far you’re going during the quarantine,
And if you’re sticking to shopping
For just essential goods or not?
They’re herding us back to our cosy zones
Where the comfort factor is driven away
By the endless fear-mongering news.
Perhaps they become puzzled
When all your devices become dormant
For more than two hours at a time during the day.
Are you just reading the only book you bought
With plastic two years ago, or skipping without your
Smart watch on? Or are you just
Spiralling with kites and cuckoos out there,
Day dreaming of fresher air, freer days?
Of Indian origin, Sultana Raza has an MA in English Literature. Her non-fiction has appeared in Litro, and A Beautiful Space. She has published more than 100 articles on art, film, and humanitarian issues (also in French). Being interested in Romanticism and Fantasy, she has also presented papers on Keats, and Tolkien in international conferences.
Her poems have been published in 30+ journals, including Ancient Heart Magazine, India Currents, London Grip, Literary Gazette, Caduceus (Ed. Yale University), the Peter Roe Series, (Tolkien Society UK),and The New Verse News (USA). More have appeared in Allegro, Indiana Voices Journal, Bewildering Stories, Classical Poetry Society, The Peacock Journal,and Spill-words.
Her fiction has received an Honorable Mention in Glimmer Train, and has appeared in Coldnoon Journal, as well as Entropy.