“Aloha to Alcohol” by John Wojtowicz

“At What Point Does a Moment Become a Memory?” by Dawn Surrat

It’s the sight of Rosalita severed in half
on the dashboard that haunts me most.
Her sunbathed grass skirt left to expose
the spiral spring core that once made her
hoop and hula to the rhythm of the road.
I can’t recall the impact or the EMS.
The sobriety tests and subsequent handcuffs
are just a flicker compared to the picture
of the wreckage wrought to my Rosalita.
The promise of sobriety soothed my mother’s
sleeplessness as marijuana medicated mine.
My former four-wheeled white stallion
was scrapped with Rosalita’s torso still attached.
Firmly mounted, she had only wavered
to sway side-to-side with her ukulele;
a peripheral pleasure that produced
a smile even during hazes of consciousness.
The image of her broken body and shattered
porcelain face precedes every “last drink.”
Before the world again reminds me of what
makes inanimate objects so easy to love.



John Wojtowicz grew up working on his family’s azalea and rhododendron nursery in the backwoods of South Jersey. He is currently employed as a social worker and takes every opportunity to combine this work with his passion for wilderness. Besides poetry, he likes bonfire, boots, beer, and bluegrass. He has been previously published in Stoneboat, Five2one, Naugatuck River Review, El Portal, and The Mom Egg.