Open “Bus” and “Evening: 42 to 71” by David Hadbawnik
These two works are built on the same interface yet take slightly different approaches to their space on the screen.
“Bus” creates a soundscape of the interior of a bus in an urban location, and then uses a black screen for over a minute at the beginning of the piece to focus our attention on the aural information. When the narrative prose starts to flow on the screen, the narrator can focus on describing what he sees and we become immersed in his observations without needing further elaboration on the setting we’re in. The wandering eye approach to this and the next poem yields acute observations of human behavior while revealing much about the narrator & speaker.
“Evening: 42 to 71” has a similar structure, but the lines of free verse appear on screen for just long enough to read them, before the next stanza replaces it. Here the speaker is also observing the action, presumably in a bus, and his rich imagination creates entire fantasies and situations that are confronted by reality. The use of music sets a creepy tone but the ambient sounds towards the end suggest that we’re in a much more common space, perhaps a bus in New York City.
Don’t stop listening, even after the pieces indicate they are over, because these works are larger than their readable texts.
Featured in Cauldron & Net.