I am harboring guilt over the hundreds & hundreds
of Pokémon trapped inside of their Poké balls trapped

inside of my phone. I want to say something important
like “Pokémon is capitalism” or “Pokémon is imperialism”

or—worse—“Pokémon is slavery,” but what do I know,
what can I know. History is a box. I am looking inside.

It’s so spacious. How the winged & taloned, fire-spewing
& ice-throwing Pokémon are any different

from the thousands upon thousands of dots I’ve captured
or words I’ve swiped away, I can’t say. But I can’t stop

thinking of releasing them, rising & free, electric & buzzing,
roaming the wilderness we still have in Alabama—

I want to crack open their impossibly small homes,
but I don’t even know how. As if figuring it out could cure me

of this impossible, unfounded guilt. As if it could bring peace
to the larger world. All of that clicking and swiping, an act,

I promise, of raw & unprocessed love.