Mike Andrelczyk lives with his wife Stacey in Strasburg, Pennsylvania. He is the author of the chapbook The Iguana Green City & other poems(Ghost City Press, 2018). He starred in the major motion picture Major League 2.
Our first computer
came in a big box
That looked like a cow
Like a computer inside a cow
A farm computer
I guess it was their marketing thing
It wasn’t like computers Now
It was the computer of Now Then
The name was even futuristic
It was like Christmas ’94.
We also got an Encarta ’95 CD-ROM
A chess game and a golf game and a skiing game
I mostly played the chess game
The CPU was named Ziggurat
In the beginning
I liked Ziggurat
Because on the Beginner level I could win
And Ziggurat explained the openings
There was the Giuoco Piano, the Queen’s Pawn Gambit
The Ruy Lopez, the Fianchetto
I liked the Fianchetto for its dramatic sweeping bishops
You could even occasionally catch Ziggurat off guard on Beginner
Then I felt smarter than the cow computer.
After I few weeks on Beginner I moved right to Grand Master.
Then it was like Ziggurat wasn’t my chess friend anymore
Ziggurat got deadly serious.
Its moves were instant, efficient and it played them with menacing intent.
I never won again.
Soon I switched to the the golf game or searched the Encarta ’95 CD-ROM
I searched Rutherford B. Hayes because my dad’s mom’s like great great-grandmom
Was his First Lady
They called her Lemonade Lucy, I think it was because she hated alcohol.
But then I got bored of Rutherford and my family history
And played the skiing game.
The skiing game started slow and got faster as you slalomed
Down the slope. And you could jump on the jumps and do dumb tricks
Until a big furry monster inevitably gobbled you up
Then that was the end.
Then like a bunch of years went by
Then I was in college and tripping on psilocybin
And I was alone
And I had my head on my pillow
And my head was like exploding onto my pillow, but, like sweetly and softly exploding
And everything was a pale purple
And a pyramid grew out of my brain
And it kept adding levels and levels and
And I knew it was Ziggurat
And I still sucked at chess
And Ziggurat was probably like three moves away from
Gobbling me up
But it was cool because I could just open
And everything would disappear.
Mike Andrelczyk lives with his wife in Pennsylvania. He is the author of a chapbook called “The Iguana Green City & other poems” (Ghost City Press, 2018).
The Phoenix Suns are a basketball team
And a metaphor
the way we want
mountains and the mountain next week I was going to
a red triangle
a shape on a radar
a lone ranger
riding in a world
of waves and strings
something that will come back to you
in two more steps
Rex built the pyramid Tak built the pyramid Jolene built the pyramid
Oko built the pyramid Vico built the pyramid Nukuwl built the pyramid
Ashlylynn built the pyramid Nessa built the pyramid Des built the pyramid
Khalil built the pyramid Stacey built the pyramid Javy built the pyramid
Eden built the pyramid Hester built the pyramid Billy built the pyramid
Nobody knows what the pyramid is for
The shape of a mountain
A score of centuries
The tooth of a behemoth
An arrow to the future
A passage through
A cheap cigarette scheme
A mound of ash
A new party hat
For another year
A thing that comes to an end.
Losing all my money on an eight-legged horse I turn instead to be hypnotized by the woman with the rose on her neck and the Minotaur in her hair. There’s a cloud leopard out her kitchen window. Y stands for walking in the sky and the dogs are barking at the rain. Her eyes are like the clenched fist meme as she waits at the bus stop on the Scottish moor and everything is backwards so that’s her room. I have nothing to pay her with. But she doesn’t seem to mind. We
are always walking above undiscovered treasure. She throws a lasso and disappears. The 8 Ward bus pulls up, hissing and I get in, still broke.
I ran over a bunny
with my dad’s lawn
mower. broke its legs
I cut the engine.
grabbed the shovel.
made a shadow
over the bunny.
But I couldn’t
smash its brains out
I just went back to mowing my dad’s lawn
like a worthless asshole
I pressed the button to turn on the tv
Then it was on
We sat on the worn-out blue recliners
The smoke hung blue in the ping-pong room
The rusted blue refrigerator on the porch was broken
The screen on the door was torn and the spring broken
And it was spring
And it was blue
And the tv was on
And I could feel in the place where my other hand used to be
A lion roared.
Slowly. Skin yellow
Crinkly like the pages of an old telephone book full of plumbers’ numbers.
But still every day I bring him Diet Pepsi
Which he drinks
And a piece of white cake
Which he eats
People aren’t supposed to live
This long on cake and Pepsi.
He never speaks out loud
Only sends neon green telepathic arrows
Through his black eyes
Under gray moth-like eyebrows
He hates me
for making him suffer
With my hammer of cake and Diet Pepsi.
Even I fool myself into thinking
I’m helping. I’m keeping
I poke at him with a vinegar-soaked sponge
taped to the end of a broken plastic broomstick stick.
He’s an angel made of light and hate
But I know that when he dies
We’ll just toss the body
Out the back window
On the grass between
The Science Building and the EZ Pump parking lot.
the apocalypse will happen
In over/under a hundred years
a hundred years
I take out my wallet take
a sip of hot coffee bite
of doughnut scratch
a lotto ticket
thought I had a five
got a K-A-R-M-
A cop walks in a circle
Around an abandoned panel truck
With “Juan 3:16”
Written in spray paint
On the back
Flies from the telephone pole to the street
And the street to the telephone pole.