NOTES TOWARD AN ELEGY, or WHAT THE BOOKS WERE FOR
by Hannah Aizenman
The books were because something happened
that gutted us of words. They were not to help us
or restore what we had lost. They were a place
to put our emptiness a center
that might hold. The books were
books of questions I did not know you well—
Remember from Old French remembrer from
Latin rememorari meaning call to mind as in
re- (emphatic, expressed force) memor (mindful).
Member Middle English via Old French from
Latin membrum meaning limb likely from
Proto-Indo-European mems-ro meaning flesh, meat.
When in the morning I make coffee when I light
a cigarette to what do my hands listen?
Once I had to tell them do this, do this, do this.
There are things a body learns. There are things
it won’t forget.