Dancing at Culture Café, by Emilie Lindemann
“Invisible banjos plunk while he tangos with the yellow janitor’s cart.” Welcome to Culture Café, where the double-shot men hang out alongside Eagle Woman, and you just may enjoy a visitation from Julie Newmar (as Catwoman).
Prose poem love songs to a beloved café: Emilie Lindemann’s new collection sets us down in that familiar haunt of just about every writer (and most of their friends), the neighborhood café; and then she cranks up the color, bass line rumbling under these dreamlike missives.
If, after a terrible moped accident, you wake up to find yourself surrounded by laughter and the smells of fresh roast coffee and body odor, it is quite possible that you’ve entered the afterlife. Or that you were always already here: pixies in floral sundresses plucking cello strings and singing while a familiar face you remember from Cancun uses the box beneath him to keep time. Ba-bum-ba-ba. Ba-bum-ba-ba-ba-ba. When everybody you love/hate/tolerate is eating the same nada burger wrap and talking about starting a mobile hoarding unit, you have to either get a car phone or bow at the altar of the red booth and say your prayers. In the morning, the stitches heal seamlessly and every bar stool in the café is still spinning from the pixie and her rugged little voice.