Friday, October 31, 2008

A Short History of Coffee and Poetry and Thoughts of J.M.

Back in the whenever somewhere

            In the sometime I grew up there,
            If you wanted a coffee, to the diner you’d go.
            You’d sit at a counter along a narrow row.
            Into a crockery cup they’d softly pour the joe.
            Or into paper cups in paper bags that’d tear

From the spills and splashes of the brown brew.
            They might serve beans and potpie stew,
            But there was no poetry.

In the shadow of Willie Penn’s city hall tower,
            When I was a long-hair, yelling peace and flower-power,
            Sitting nights in dim, dingy coffee shops

Pretending espresso was not bitter slop,
            There’d fall a hush when all would shut their mouth,
And in air smelling of smoke thick and sour,

           You’d amble to a two-foot stage, and rail
            About injustice and pain and those who fail
            To acknowledge poetry.

            Now in seasons warm or seasons cold,
            In the curt time I am growing old,
            When we seek the juice of the coffee bean
            We seek the malls and that neon beam
            Of the bookstore wonders to which we stream,
            Where for four bucks the coffee’s sold.

            And in what moments we can glean,
Between the chugs of the cappuccino machine,
We still read our poetry.

Thanks to Ava and Poetry Palace and I have nominated Old raven.


Anonymous said...

There is poetry in these memories.

Anonymous said...

Very well done!!

Susie Clevenger said...

So true...I remember sitting in diners as people sat and talked about farming and yesterday...then when I wore a P.O.W bracelet we talked of the horrors of a war we couldn't It is Barnes and Noble with designer coffee and my notebook of poems...thank you for the memories...the history of coffee.

Marbles in My Pocket said...

Nice one, Larry! I never did any f that stuff, but I saw at the movies. Does that count?

Kay said...

This is delightful! Thank you for writing it. xoXox

Anonymous said...

love your take on yesteryears.. my thursday..

nicolewian said...

You make me want even more to go back to those days!

Anonymous said...

love your blog and your poem!

kez said...

Loved this although I'm not a coffee drinker, but love tea shops and see how much things have changed but our desire to create remains the same love it thank you x

Melissa said...

I think you should do a series on these sorts of memories. There IS still poetry even in the shadow of those neon lights - although sometimes it's harder to find.

The Poetry Palace said...

pleasant sentiments, well penned.

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