C.N.P Poetry 

  • Cathexis Northwest Press

Look Up

By: Erich Sysak


In the city of silks you find a

glass key on a ledge where rainwater drips

from the clanking subway above.

Here you look up. They are building

another altar for the Earth’s gold.

The filth is dredged up with backhoes and

foreign labor ashamed of their skin.

You say, Bangkok, with a confused tongue

With sleepy eyes with

No longer ashamed of capitalists and loyal suits

you drop the key into your pocket and put away

the old umbrella. Look up.

See, I trust you. The gate is here.

Unlocked.

Reach for it.



Erich R. Sysak is originally from New Orleans and wandered the Southern United States most of his adult life. After grad school he flew to Bangkok to start a new life as an English language instructor. He never looked back. His 2 novels, Dog Catcher and Stage IV, are published by Monsoon Books. For the past decade he has developed a permaculture farm in the NE of Thailand that grows a wide variety of plants and trees, focusing mainly on fish, guava and rice.


"I just finished 10 years of work on a permaculture farm and was making a big change going back to teaching, wearing nice clothes and being in the classroom. I was in Bangkok on job interviews underneath these massive buildings feeling this powerful sense of change from the rural lifestyle back to capitalism and cities."

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