The Robot Scientist’s Daughter
to medical wonder, sat under the machine’s lights,
but then tiptoed off on a paper trail,
looking for an island of cranes. She made a thousand
wishes; still she shed a blue glow and everyone said
how sickly. Her nails made of plastic and paper maché,
her heart’s thump-thump three times too fast.
Her one kidney curled inside her ribs, her blood trying
to escape. “Father!” she screamed, but he couldn’t save her.
The robot scientist’s daughter knew what she had to do.
With her own two hands she built a new body, one
that worked better this time, silver and shiny and smooth
as mirrored glass. After all, she’d been trained,
it was no less than was expected. She crawled inside
and adjusted the fit. This time, there will be no stopping
her. The curves are all impenetrable, and the precision
of each drum-kit-beat keeps her in line. She’s a soldier,
a savior, a ship to bear prisoners into space.
— Jeannine Hall Gailey, author of The Robot Scientist’s Daughter