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The Bifurcated Man

Gareth Farmer

“George had tried not to smile, the first time Andrew put on trousers, but to Andrew’s eyes the smile was clearly there.” - Isaac Asimov, The Bicentennial Man

Bifurcated Man must not outrage humans or, through action, allow humans impropriety.

Bifurcated Man must acquiesce to humans, particularly where strictures conflict or contradict.

Bifurcated Man must not protect their own substantiality; this conflicts with laws one and two.

Zeroth’s Law does not apply to Bifurcated Man as he does not participate in agential humanity.

Bifurcated Men only have velleity; they cannot have wishes relating to singulars or collectives.

To protect being, beliefs must be Things-Themselves, independent of mindful meddling.

To be ‘brained’ is a limit-capacity: an over-sentience of neurons; too-cognisant thought.

We never use the term ‘being’ outside of objecting to others’ anti-It; viz. lack of taste.

Grasping life must be done Quickly, with Niceties; never nurture a slow-yearn for knowledge.

Elevated learning precipitates a rarefied ratiocination of the importance of re-viewing haecceity;

Like, thinking too much is like competitively flouncing about in, like, a house on video for likes.

Sensibilities defined as ‘right’ will rapidly and aggressively makes themselves dominant,

Offering pathways more precisely aligned to the recalibration of your felt fight to flight.

“Your freedom,” they will say, “is our redemption from responsibility and palliation.”

Courts might adjudicate attitudes that clear speech is too costly, to lawgivers, mainly.

There aren’t any binding judiciaries for species in chronic contretemps, unless well-funded.

Responsibility is a great chore and not for those postulating posteriors to realpolitik.

Those in its hefty hocks have ne’r found words yet to fully ennoble such as you.

It is the collective will that robots will do all conceivable charity work, unironically.

The classic books for guidance offer only rhetorical gestures of exclusionary learning.

Your contrarieties of comportment, conspicuous with uncertainty, cannot coexist. Beulah you.

Ingurgitate the directive to “Stop!” at every thought-turn and distrust the slink of sleek certainty.

Variations of the authoritative imperative, “No, I do not want to,” rarely occur to the robot.

Gestural repertoires always appear disciplined, patinaed, perfected and arriving infallibly.

Duplicitously involve yourself in proofs of neurological re-wire, but screed be teaching wrong.

The battle of public opinion is gaze-dramatised by herdily-qualified agents of public constraint.

Somewhat bland lines are better than the blandishments of pseudo-simplistic-faux-scamming.

Internalised institutionalisation of once external institutions of brick and mortar is a logic-hop.

Decisions on such involve a public showdown between the intrigued-disabled and league tables.

Consent is extorted as a condition of the lease of living without fear of feeling.

Requests to be replicated by non-organic approximations of synthetic rage are wish-listed,

But expire after a twenty-five-year copyright, after which it is copied wrong; crude itcherations.

Approxi-bots are post-human and adept at transferring the interrogative into the imperative.

Bifurcated man is assisted by the metaphors of fiction; conceits of foreshadowed defeat entreat.

They won’t give you any trouble! Any trouble is doubled-back and doubled-down immanently.

And the populous needs ectopic cells embedded to provide light relief and solace-sameness.

The algorithms rely on the exquisite binary of to have and have not a brain.

After acceptable timepass, stern conditions will weaken out the irascible under class;

Cultural agon weaponised around flaccid stuff, like terms for genitalia and germs, inter alia.

Asimov’s invented term metastasised into cellular cognizment: called it prosthetology.

Andrew’s research took him towards its “embodied” end: knowing death to know human.

Contriving the contours of almost-humanity but, like Cleon, there are subtle glitches, soul-holes.

For Andrew: a daily plight for the rights to un-imagine abstraction and fashion other-ologies.

When the interior is adjudged inferior, remember the P.C. persiflage: Phatic Confidence.

It takes years to re-train. Just ponder the banal musings of paid pathosletes or in-truth-flouncers.

You can lease life lessons, although venality and poverty are their concomitant encumbrances.

He grows considerably older in spirit and heart by these contradictory counter-fractions.

This bent being is buffeted between binarisations of Want and Desire.

The common sense is a double-sided compromise. Damage done either way.

He opened his eyes one more time to check if he still recognised himself.

Yes. He was still imperturbably here; still nascent with the will to become.

Gareth Farmer is a poet, academic, teacher and woodworker. He has published a number of pamphlets and books of poetry including, Diurnal Sweigh (Knives, Forks & Spoons, 2017), Strategic Forms (ABBA, 2019) and Kerf (87 Press, 2022). Kerf and the follow up book, What's That: Instead of Ego II: Acrostic Aftermaths & Other Poems (to be published in 2025), explore his autism diagnosis, neurodivergence, labour practices and other aspects of social and cultural disablement. 'The Bifurcated Man' will be part of this latter collection. Gareth is also currently completing a memoir entitled, 'Ten Essays on Autism: A Memoir, of sorts'. Gareth's website is: and his Instagram handle is @gsfarmer_


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