5 poems by Alec Cizak

Alec Cizak, Poetry

“9/11”

 

 

We didn’t teach that day,

we stood on the roof of

the eyesore in Koreatown

housing my employers and

the corrupt management co.

refusing to exterminate

mice and rats stealing crumbs

from my carpeted floor

at night.

 

We stood on the roof,

my ESL students and I,

smoking cigarettes and

pretending we knew who

Osama Bin Laden actually was,

marveling at the empty

streets below, and the quiet

skies above.

 

New York took the hit,

Los Angeles went to sleep.


 

“Noise”

 

 

Rock and roll deemed it 

a Spiritual Freeway, 

an express lane to

 

nirvana.

 

A microdot, or perforated tab 

sectioned from an illustration— 

Mickey Mouse, Popeye, a dancing bear

 

(like this shit was made for children).

 

I remember November,

a freezing night in Bloomington, 

three hits rewiring my sanity. I sat 

in an old man’s rocking chair 

on an unheated, glassed-in porch.

 

Public Enemy and Anthrax 

shredded skyscraping speakers, 

confused my eyes for my ears, 

listening to the floor, a wild oak sea, 

rolling, rolling, rolling.

 

I calmed the rocking chair, 

the only thing I could

 

control,

 

my mind scrambled for 

meaning in a hallucination, 

struggled to fabricate God

from a vision that did not

 

(actually)

 

exist.


 

“P.O.V. Shot #3”

 

 

The lone window 

in your Bachelor’s apartment 

on Ardmore faces north, 

the dotted hills 

a few miles away, 

a rather quick

jog up Normandie on 

the 206, one-seventy-five 

one way, or three dollars 

for an all-day ticket.

 

Steam paints ghosts 

on the window in the 

mornings when you brew 

instant coffee on a crusted 

hot plate resting atop

a microwave next to a fridge, 

a corner of your tiny room

you call the kitchen.

 

As the sneaky desert 

temperature rises, smudges 

appear on the window, traces 

of your fingers, wiping away

the steam in the morning so 

you may enjoy your instant

coffee, plot your escape

from this four-hundred dollar 

prison while you gaze

at the Hollywood sign and 

remember a time you 

believed 

anything 

could happen.


 

 

“Here and There”

 

 

It’s funny

how quickly

the time arrives

to consider

what you’ve done

so far.

 

Vultures

loiter on streetlamps

grunting

at your belief

you are in a position

to consider

a future.


 

“The Darkness Is No Plague”

 

 

There it sits,

a gargoyle on my shoulder

guarding the keep

from persistent joy;

 

Sometimes it sleeps

and I can see the sun,

feel the atoms of life

halt the grand march.

 

Sometimes the joy

blooms to a sonic boom,

wakes the dragon

and reminds me

 

the darkness

is no plague,

merely,

a destination.

 

 


Alec Cizak is a writer and filmmaker from Indiana. His most recent books are available from ABC Group Documentation. He is the CEO of Uncle B. Publications and the chief editor of the digest magazine Pulp Modern.