Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Coffee, you flavor my life...(2001)
by Peter Menkin

With the cup of coffee
I am friends; usually, we
meet the partaker
of this tasty liquid dark.

I think of you, coffee,
once beans, picked
in South America,
here to be ground right. You

fill the cup and saucer,
and stirring you is pleasure,
since I always intend first
sipping. This in rememberance
of my father, who said
I love coffee. He believed in hope. My wife, she

may by now have changed her tastes,
but when we were married in our
twenties she drank coffee

in the morning. Women like you
coffee, for I've known some
others who entertain your aromas

enjoying the heat like me
that you are when sipped, drunk
and go down the throat
giving taste buds a lasting
envelopment. Engage my mouth.

I remember her words: "Tug boat
coming 'round the bend!"
She went to a place
called St. John's Episcopal
where she learned to want peace.

There was one woman
I wanted to marry very
much, and she drank you
when we went all over the place:
coffee in a swank hotel, cool
hangout restaurants, petite
MaMa's exclusive lunch spot
on Maiden Lane San Francisco,
and regular coffee shop, too--tasty word
is what my family thought
of my desires to drink you

with her. Too bad she ran
away to another when South
of Houston in New York City.
She learned in Temple
about Hebrew and God is good.

Sparks drank it, you coffee
good in the morning at the wood
round table in her San Francisco
apartment, kitchen table simple.

Marry me, but not so.
My friend went away, she
a lover of jazz, God,
the morning, and Quaker life
What funny combinations have come
my way, with you coffee. She
is gone. Sadly I miss her
announcements, punctuated with:
"Oh, my God!"
She learned about loving
and sharing, with laughter.

Tonight I will remember,
there is life before coffee.
Hear my prayer.

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