The Thing About Notebooks

Is they’re ordinary
collectors of
facts and figures
A crayon mark 
or two
Sometimes they’re blank 
like a mind can feel
or like a sadness
or a fresh start, 
a new beginning 
with the possibility of an end
or eternity
Sometimes they're a continuation of ideas

The thing about notebooks
the containers of one's soul, 
is people dismiss them as mere notebooks
without appreciating the fact
that anyone who bothers with a blank page
may never be the same

The thing about notebooks
is the infinite variety in which they’re bound, 
that people want to read them
the ones that are filled fat with words, 
oozing with thought,
seeping with taped in mementos
love letters
to do lists
a thumbprint
coffee stains
and the magnificence 
of what’s contained in the creator’s mind
somehow finds its way
into the world 
leaving an indelible mark
on those lucky enough to read them
Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

8 thoughts on “The Thing About Notebooks

  1. This is absolutely beautiful – an ode to the often overlooked, underestimated notebook. This reminds me so very much of Margaret Wise Brown’s “The Important Book.” Have you read it? If not, give it a go. It’s one of my favorites! =))

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Dear, Dear Alice:

    I don’t know that I’ve ever coupled “dear,” but your work was so moving, it seemed like the right thing to do!

    I very conscientiously felt a recurring smile ebb across my face at the beginning and end of each stanza. As a soul who’s been enamored with journals since I was a little girl, I couldn’t help but sink into the subtleties, treasuring the implications that transported me to so many favorable destinations:

    “taped-in memento receipts; infinite variety; filled with fat words (perhaps, my favorite line!)”

    I wholeheartedly share this affection for these treasure boxes. For me (smile), “The thing about notebooks is…” each one I’ve purchased in my lifetime comes with a unique sense of adventure as I hunt for the perfect look, feel, connection. I consider how its appeal is most befitting for that chapter of my life. My goal is always to fill all the pages (sometimes, successfully and sometimes not); but, I believe the most prolific observation that you’ve conveyed was most beautifully captured in the closing:

    “…leaving an indelible mark on those lucky enough to read them.”

    Sometimes, I think this gift is to the writer – who goes back to read them ages after they’ve been written.
    Sometimes, the treasure is for perhaps a loved one, revealing insights otherwise unknown.
    Sometimes, the treasure is for a stranger – enlightened by the nuances and links to shared humanity.

    As I reflect on “the magnificence contained in [your] mind…” I feel I received a treasure of my own.

    Thank you for affording us the “luck” of reading this post.

    It is most enchanting.

    Sincerely a “notebook” fan,

    ~Carla Michelle

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Carla Michelle, thank you for your kind words and deep reflection. I often consider burning old notebooks after re-reading them, wondering what will happen to them when it’s time for me to leave them behind. Do I really want people to read everything? And then I think about how bored out of their minds they may be, lol! I still have them though. I can’t seem to part with them yet.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You are very welcome, Alice! I’ve had similar thoughts, lol. We are on the same page.

        While the thought has seemed “cringy” to me before (as the young people say in my life), on other occasions, it’s seemed like an honor to have my sincerest thoughts shared with a random reader. Who knows! Until then, I haven’t parted with mine either.

        Carry on!

        ~Carla Michelle

        Liked by 1 person

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