notebooks (a prequel)

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Prequel to the forthcoming "Notebooks", a study on memory, drawn from the Notebooks of the past. Free to download.


  • Notebooks.


    A Prequel

  • Arguement

    A memory is a piece of information stored in our

    brains, no more nor less important than the next.

    very few people consciously can choose which

    memories remain and which fade with time - so

    what is this criteria, beyond our control, which

    chooses for us which images we see? What fabric

    in our subconscious allows some memories to pass

    while others remain, vivid and bright as day?

  • Mom, Cathy, Trish, Jody.. .you all did this.

    I was never supposed to love anything.

  • 1. The Post Mortem

    These strange corpses

    preserved from decay are the

    failed crumbling of honesty and

    we'll keep them that way, these

    memories under glass

    where no air gets in

    the suspension of the moment

    hold no fear of gravity

    or time

    not the way I do.

  • 2. Hieroglyphs

    Etched into walls,

    the hieroglyphs spell

    a forgotten language of

    ceremonies we once practiced;

    pictures of canoes

    still summer lakes that shimmer

    shared swing chairs,

    evenings, mornings,

    words that


    colors, change shapes,

    until emotion becomes

    illiterate, alliterated

    a chameleon fallen

    into muted abstractions

    no longer able to describe

    itself as

    what was before or

    what might come after.

    Gilded now in it's unfaltering


    that have

    crumbled away

    pale motes of dust

    the colored chalk outlines

    of a stranger's shapeless fantasy

    the myth ofwhat

    can never happen again

    may have never happened.

  • 3. Dead Letter Office

    Yellowed and dog eared

    moments of a life that got

    pressed between these pages; where

    once love letters were sent

    as easily as breathing

    now only paper brittle to the touch

    ancient archaeology

    thinned under waves of time

    those envelopes, weightless, backlogged

    burden the back room shelves

    where a raving attendant

    at the front of the house

    sure in her resolve

    no longer believes answers

    to such questions as;

    What flowers?

    Whose heart is this?

    When did this happen?

    Why did I stay?

    Who did I leave?

    How can I leave, again?

  • 4. On Reflections

    Tied together, bounds

    of a spiral metal spine; are

    thoughts encased in amber

    the forensics

    dig for questions

    the reflections

    androgynous, unformed


    painted only in form

    leaving everything

    to imagine

    tied together

    the answers only secondary

    in the process

    of creating monsters

    or justifying the pain

    that selective ignorance

    inflicts on truth-

    this figure nailed to a cross

    will utter anything


    if no one else is listening.. .

  • 5. There is No Hope For This Book

    There is no hope for this book, it's

    cloaked unceremonious dust

    beneath my fingers.

    There are no hopes for these words,

    unable to build bridges

    they'll fall away.

    Canceled passages vain with time

    This book lies to sell the truth

    This book strives for

    what it no longer believes.

    There is no hope for this book

    It creates romances only

    from the elimination

    of possibilities.

    This book dances in a mirror

    all the while ignoring itself

    while Narcissus

    cannot see his own blindness.

  • 6. Photograph of a Statue or a Forest

    It froze in place, that moment

    slowing down until the shutter snapped;

    when there was an understanding,

    it was a commitment

    this is how to remember-

    Encased in porcelain

    eyes looking forward, unblinking

    at one unassailable future or past

    that will never change

    Hands at work, forming

    this monument as

    a rebellion against chaos

    forming grains of sand

    and dust against

    their jagged will to fall away

    and this is how to remember

    driven to hold a moment

    so that it never escapes

    any eyes which behold it

    after all names has been forgotten.

  • 7. Words hidden in a Still Life

    Words can fail

    unborn with thoughts

    homeless in rags

    wounded in battle

    spoken offhand

    left alone

    shrouded by noise

    hidden behind veils or

    colorless blank sheets

    shredded into bins

    intentions held apart or

    misinterpreted together

    words can fail

    to reach you

    in every way but one.

  • 8. How to Train Your Ghosts

    It is you in the corner when I fail

    because I have forgotten your name

    I have replaced it with mine -

    the sum of a remainder

    come to haunt futures, passing

    to and from moments

    as wisps of smoke from embers

    and if it's true I never saw you

    here in these dusted mirrors

    I can be sure this is your skin

    these are your eyes

    this is what you left behind

    Everything that was mine to keep.. .

  • 9. Writ on a Napkin in Montreal, 1992

    If the stars really are empty husks

    slowly falling in on themselves

    the warm sun is then a myth felt

    a fleeting afterthought to this, held.

    How void any moment might be

    without any fleeting light to see

    given life by these dying sparks

    filling the long spaces between dark

    If a future is already cast and

    in probable outcomes nothing lasts

    was there more to it than endings?

    What purpose then has that light sending

    warm to my upturned face today

    if only to be felt, never taken away

    or borrowed in those moments of cold

    when warmth and light are hard to hold

    How meaningless one moment in light

    when everything is meant to end in night

    Every time I close my eyes

    it's belief that holds you there in the sky.

  • 10. Evidence

    The truth is a j igsaw, jagged edged

    and fragments are something broken

    or not put together yet-

    Memory as an abbreviation

    or an accusation

    still was what it was, if

    lacking contingency or context.

    Answers are mosaics often

    built rough with scraps of experience

    seldom without drafts.

    Memory is a butterfly

    entombed under glass

    suggesting flight but

    preserved without life;

    colors in a vacuum never fade.

  • Author's Note:

    These Poems appear as a prequel to the

    forthcoming full length release

    "Notebooks" and are meant to stand alone as both

    a precursor to the book and as a section under the

    same title - while they will not be included with

    the book, they are intended to compliment the

    subject matter. For more information, and

    downloads, please visit issuu,com/jeffc.