Chapter 37

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by Greg

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by Greg

Major Tom and I ride
in Hooman #A's lap,
one cat butt on each
rough-denim knee
as the private train car
sways soothing along
the age-old tracks:
the pseudo-infrastructure
called America's transit system.

Hooman #A:
I still don't understand
where you secured
the funds to book
a private car
on Wandaru.

Major Tom:
What's a Wandaru?

Hooman #A:
Isn't that the app you used?

Major Tom:
What's an app?

I have to explain
to Major Tom
that an app is like the drug
their cyborg phones deliver
to the pleasure center
of hooman minds
to keep them codependent
on technologies
that leave them exposed
to Babylonian propaganda.

Unfortunately, there is nothing
Cat Society #337 has devised
to respond to the compromising
state of hooman cyborg tech
without also interfering
with hooman's ability
to do 21st century jobs
to survive.

As Major Tom nods
in equal parts
wide-pupil curiosity
and catty wisdom,

I turn to Hooman #A
and tell him
we do not use apps;
just as felines developed
thumb-gloves to interact
with hooman's physical world,

all cats have telepathic
neural laces of carbonithril
that allow access
to Earth's Internet
and GalaNet.

But it is nice
even with neural lace
to work on traditional
computers with monitors
and Best Buy speakers
because felines enjoy
experiencing life here
from hoomanity's perspective.

Hooman #A stares at me
for an amusingly long time.

The private train car
turns from peacock blue
seats to gray-dark
pockets in the night
as the sun casts its last
warm rays through
double-pane portholes.

Hooman #A
Did you just say
you have a lace
on your cat brain
that connects telepathically
to the Internet?

Major Tom:
And GalaNet.

Hooman #A:
"GalaNet," huh?
I suppose this is when
you tell me the galaxy
has an information network
that sends data faster
than the speed of light.

Major Tom gapes
into flehmen face.
He thinks Hooman #A
spun that guess
out of nothing.

He wasn't in the living room
the night Hooman #1
told Hooman #A
that they should binge
watch Black Mirror.

But I was there,
flinging my golden fur-belly
into Hooman #1's petting hand
as they mused on
futurism and technology
so that I knew their minds
were wild with stories.

I grin as I tell Hooman #A:

Well, as a matter of fact,
GalaNet must
send information
through warps
in space-time
to bypass the limitations
of the speed of light,

or how else
would the dinorexes of old
and the Illuminati now
send messages
to their mother planet,
Alpha Centauri B
in the Babylonian Empire?

If the lizardmen
take control of Earth,
with Orange Man
and Brexit Man—
and the Prince of Hate—

then GalaNet will come
online sooner
than the world
could ever realize.

Yet it wouldn't be worth
enslavement to the lizards.

Feline Societies dreamt
since they first came here
to smash Jurassic dinorexes
with meteors

of a hoomanity
who bravely breached
through the weight of fear

and reached
galactic consciousness
through their free will
and collective spirit,

from tribal to global
to solar beings,

if only given
a clean chance,
without corruption,
without violence, and
without struggles for power.

Hooman #A blinks
his eyes rapidly several times.

Hooman #A:
Can you talk telepathically?

Major Tom:
Why yes we can.

Hooman #A jumps
from his seat in the train
and hits the top of his head
on the storage above
where our cat carriers
are strapped next
to a duffle bag.

As Hooman #A rubs
the sore on his head,
he scowls at Major Tom.

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