13 Sep Noah Cicero
A WAY SOMEHOW
I don’t know, at times,
if you are really people, I
know you are people, I mean,
you aren’t walking on fours, and you
wear clothes. (But sometimes, when
you’re naked, I don’t know if you are human,
and get confused, that’s why I don’t
go to strip joints anymore, or have sex.)
How did you all become people? How did
you get so good at showing up on time for work,
and doing what your manager says, how did you
get so good at being detailed-oriented. There
is an ad on Craigslist for a processor, that says, “We are
looking for someone seriously ready to start a career
and care about the work they do every day.”
Seriously the ad doesn’t even state what the
company produces? How the fuck can you people
care about some unknown something, will you even care
after you get the job?
How do you become a person?
Usually, instead of trying to get a job,
I listen to music on YouTube, instead of being
a person, I try to become the notes of songs,
the chord structure of “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”
covered by Amy Winehouse, I want to become that song, I learn
the song on guitar and strum it on my adobe porch thing,
trying to become non-human, sometimes I try to become
the taste of a Carl’s Jr. cheeseburger, I want to be
that delicious, that bad for you.
Sometimes I listen to Amitabha chants,
Navajo chants, even old
Kentucky Old Regular Baptists call out chants, I
want to be a pure feeling, that may lead to heaven,
but instead I am Noah Cicero, sometimes I scream, I
can’t be controlled, I can’t be tamed, because I
don’t know what to be—
When you see a pronghorn antelope from your car, high up
north in Nevada, by the Walker River Rez. I don’t know
what to be, the antelope, the person seeing the antelope, the grass
that the antelope is eating, the feeling the person gets from
seeing the antelope, the feeling the antelope has while
eating the grass, so I try to be all things, then I realize,
I’m just wind, swirling and swirling, and it is okay, and
it isn’t okay,
and all will work itself out, something is taking its course, but
it never works out, and all all all it comes, and the wind
shaking the leaves of the palm tree, the hum of bugs, and
me trying to find a job on Craigslist.
VALLEY OF FIRE
Sometimes I lie down
in the desert,
trying to become
as quiet as a cactus
sometimes I wish
I could become
My favorite cactus is the
It is funny, it is shaped
like a beehive.
HAN SHAN GETS A JOB ON COLD MOUNTAIN
“Can’t you get a job using your degree”
“I’m sure you’ll get a job by the end
of next week”
“Have you tried Indeed.com”
“Have you tried convenience stores”
“Have you tried job fairs”
“Have you tried Facebook”
“Have you tried watching YouTube
tutorials on how to get a job”
Noah looks up and points at them—
pokes them in the chest—
God made me a poet—
God made Han Shan a poet,
He put Han Shan on Cold Mountain,
and he put me in this desert.
I’ve never asked any of you
to stop making money
to work less hard
For me to write
of Cold Mountain.
I must live there,
at all times.
On the summit, in the caves,
sleeping under the bristlecone pines,
because you can’t live
on Cold Mountain.
You have better things to do.
My job is to bring you water
from the melted snow
that makes its streams,
so when you need Cold Mountain
I’ll be there
to provide you with water.
But for right now,
leave me the fuck alone!
I’m on Cold Mountain
and I’ll come down
when the wind tells me to,
not because of
an ad on Craigslist!
These poems were originally published in Noah Cicero’s latest collection of poetry Bipolar Cowboy [Lazy Fascist Press]. They have been republished here on ÖMËGÄ with Noah’s consent :)