Shahir Rizk



The patterns in the manicured plots become the future of high
fructose corn syrup. The spaces in between are
littered with lakes, Michigan-blue and full of fish eyes
staring at the god Ra’.
What they produce will not pay the bills,
or cover
the cost of care for their in-bread children,
foaming at the mouth and shrieking. Bliss, as the mothers die
slowly and the fathers
check out. What they produce
I will cover
in some grand speech about the dangers
of whatever makes the people scared.
They don’t know it, yet,
they have never been to the fields,
where semi-domesticated dogs disappear every now
and then, where goats are family.
But we’re so good at looking
down effortlessly floating, I am burning
a metric ton of deadwood
from a million centuries
I, too, look down
and somewhere in Ypsilanti,
I become part of a conspiracy about
the white trails of jets
on a sun-blasted day.


SHAHIR RIZK is an Egyptian-born professor of Biochemistry at Indiana University South Bend. His poetry in English and in Arabic hovers around the perception of scientific progress and philosophy, logic and time, nature and industry, reality and dreams. Shahir’s work has appeared in Acorn and Modern Haiku.