Notebook Series, 2011-2014

 

There’s nothing so forlorn as a book on a bookshelf in a bookstore

*

The pleasure of pushing one’s legs into fresh blue jeans

*

Song (after Arcade Fire)

I wasted my life
      don’t waste yours
on chocolate milk
      cigarettes & wars

 

& when that girl looks at you
      don’t look away
      you must
      hold her gaze

*

Song (after Lucinda Williams)

Baby since you left
      I’m crying loud
but I can’t call
      ’cause I’m too proud
I can’t go back
      to how things were
before you left
      & took up with her

 

(chorus:)
It’s the long, long way
      you loved me
the long, long way
      you loved me

*

Band name: The Hickies

*

Country Song

I’ve put out an A.P.B.
on my heart
honey it all fell apart
if you see it out there
please tell me where
so we can make a fresh start

*

At the supermarket: for some reason the phrase “fingerling potatoes” sounded very luxurious to me

*

How many times have I shaved? How many times will I shave? The strange impatient pleasure of lathering, the feel of the whiskers under the shaving cream, so familiar as to be “second nature” – even so, I continue to learn how to do it better, to use the edge of the blade guard to avoid cutting my face, to push the blade with and against the grain, with and against the grain

*

The purpose and harmony of the cafe workers dancing behind the counter in close quarters, washing and stacking dishes, prepping supplies, one woman hustling gracefully to fix and serve meals, moving back and forth, glancing around with one eye. Then a “new guy” slides behind the counter and she asks his name – “Kevin” – “I’m Natalie” – then immediately asks him again – “I forgot” – laughing – begins showing him around, explaining, sleepy at first, but warming up to it as he jokes with her

*

Song

I’ve lost
     my favorite handkerchief
        my favorite handkerchief
     now is gone

I’ve found
     my missing handkerchief
        my missing handkerchief
     has been found

*

Story: “Walking with Seevely”

An alien falls in beside a young woman walking around in the city – they continue to walk silently through the night

shipwrecked – bodies floating in the dark, on the water

the opening is small – maybe the size of a pinprick, a bite on the tongue – but it is there if we feel for it

*

The woman’s knowing eagerness as she pitches her payroll service to the young entrepreneur in the cafe – asking him if he’s already done this or that to prepare the financial side of the business, hired an accountant, etc. – so that she takes control of the meeting and seems to be interviewing him, assertive and pert in her business suit, hunched tautly forward in her seat while the guy leans back, casual in shorts

*

The weave too fine
     the glass too finely
      spun
no news – no news

*

Blue car pulls in across the street, blonde-haired woman wearing light blue summer dress and wedge sandals gets out, adjusts bike rack on back of car, marches off behind house, marches back with a bag of golf clubs slung over her shoulder, swings bag into back seat, kneels to adjust something, gets back into car, drives off

*

Leaf-blossoms blow down from the trees, thin as silk, twisting and fluttering down to catch in the edges of drives and sidewalk and gutters, falling on cars and porches. Children scoop them up in double-handfuls to throw them at each other in the neighbor’s yard

*

The world’s foremost onomatopoeist settled in with a faraway look of concentration, held her writing utensil poised over her notebook, and waited

*

So many citizens out tonight: little finches hopping twig to twig, the hush of the street then a car coming, neighbor on his porch staring

*
Aeneas

Then things got harder. Labors
once performed easily grew
out of reach. The neighbors
      he once knew
all moved away and mother
just a name, no goddess blew
the seas calm, nor
no tempest came

*

Song

I wanna be your red corvette
but it hasn’t happened yet

*

Two women and a man walk south down the block. A little while later they pass the same way heading north, each one carrying a dresser drawer in either hand, moving slowly, in a kind of rhythm, the drawers swaying heavily, none of them talking

 

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David Hadbawnik is a poet living in Buffalo, NY. Part one of his translation of the Aeneid was published in 2013 (Little Red Leaves); part two is forthcoming in 2014. In 2012, he edited Thomas Meyer’s Beowulf (Punctum Books), and in 2011 he edited (with Sean Reynolds) selections from Jack Spicer’s Beowulf for CUNY’s Lost and Found Document Series. Other publications include Field Work (BlazeVOX, 2011), Translations From Creeley (Sardines, 2008), Ovid in Exile (Interbirth, 2007), and SF Spleen (Skanky Possum, 2006). He is the editor and publisher of Habenicht Press and the journal kadar koli, and a co-editor of eth press (www.ethpress.com).

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