by: Lauren Gordon

Chapter 1
Nancy meets her robot.

The first thing you should do is put the robot back in the closet,
lock it, and for safety hide the key.
Ned will say he doesn’t see a thing. Ned will hide the key under a statuette, carefully palming her ceramic tit. Ned will insert the tape.
He wants to know, do you think
the sound of your voice can activate the robot?

Chapter 2
Nancy loves her father.

I guess you recognize the black widow spider, spun-
suppose we look in the cupboards? Egg. Corn.

And your mother, dead.

Nancy thinks hard, wants answers hard, hewn
like the oak of a trapdoor; you can’t pull that trick again

unless, she thinks fearfully,
unless she thinks fearfully,
you fall into such a deep hole, or onto some craggy rocks –

Query the shaft of light falling on your hardwood floors;
your father whispering legalese into the folds of your
mother’s nightgown, a stale cigarette
your own heart an ashtray, always careful to avoid the trap-door area, reset:
wait for the whirring sound that smokes above your bed
your head pressing like concrete.

Chapter 3
Nancy and the Innuendo.

Ned beamed his flashlight, threw light
into a nest of darkness; we’re here! Let us out!
Call loudly, yank the knob with all your might
then feel the relief; a hidden button is a gasp,

the couple’s prison a turret
unbreakable glass. Investigate the foot
in your bed, the one attached to your ankle
then have it removed.