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Sunday, Oct. 9, 2011

National Ice Cream Sandwich Day

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When the busboy slips
like a bride off the dock
his shift shifts
a few degrees of difficulty.

The restaurant needed
a spanking all morning
& it would need a good spanking
all summer long.

The novelty slingshots
in the gift shop. Inevitably
a genius loads one up
with something hellish & fried.

When will management
get as serious about syntax
as syntax is serious
about management?

About the philosophical
implications of boiling
lobsters alive?
About the cooks

prepping your meal
in a balloon of speed metal?
A busboy’s feet can be
of several minds like a locker

full of Converse All-Stars.
Sometimes it feels
the tourists are vibrating
in your lap.

Then a guy in a powder blue
jump suit strolls in
& orders twenty clam rolls
like clam rolls are part

of the weather.
It’s true, when the restaurant
is slamming, a busboy
& waitress are one.

The moon
& a busboy, the beach
& a waitress, and later
maybe karaoke.


Matthew Guenette is the author of two full-length poetry collections: American Busboy (University of Akron Press, 2011) and Sudden Anthem (Dream Horse Press, 2008). A contributing editor to the Southern Indiana Review, he blogs occasionally at www.matthewguenette.com. He lives, works and loses sleep in Madison, WI. "National Ice Cream Sandwich Day" first appeared in American Busboy.