A freeform poem kind of thing. I'm writing until my brain quiets down enough for me to work. (God damn it. I can't get anything done today. I wonder if this is what DaVinci felt like and why he pumped out things so prolifically.) This is a poorly done rendering of a mental image I had one day when thinking about the kind of engineering I don't like.

Boxes and Arrows

we chunk life into nested boxes.
drill down / drill deep / wrap your details up and outline them.
how cleanly can you draw your lines,
make your abstractions,
and dissect,
your problem?

we went out and saw
in the woods
a young deer. it was lovely.
and we followed it and watched it
as it drank from the water
as it fled from the highway
as it moved like a statue between the trees
as it ran.

it was a nuisance, wreaking havoc
on the petunias of the town.
so we wrestled with the image in our minds
and said "we have to understand it
find its needs and values,
then we can fix it, change it, fix it."
so we shot.

pinned it down, sliced it open,
went through it with a fine pick
anatomy book in one hand,
surgical expert on the phone.
referenced its datasheet model from its ear-tag
traced the blood flow
calculated how many litres were pumping onto the ground
saying to the glassy eyes we're sorry, sorry, but we have to know.
we'll put you back together when we're done
we promise.

and we disassembled and wrapped in plastic
and argued and fought until we could say
this is a model to the first approximation
which is imperfect
but close enough.

we had our boxes and our arrows.
and we'd promised to put him back together, so we did.
everything stitched into its right place,
everything completely summed,
no remainder.

we even siphoned the red pools off the ground and gently slipped them through a needle back into the veins.

we put him in a place of honor in a glass case
next to our diagram
and we said
problem solved.

I suppose in a second revision we could make him animatronic.