A DRINK CALLED ‘JOE’

I’m still working on my coffee poetry book, and I’m thinking about including this poem in the mix. I’m not sure yet, because I’m not positive it’s clear and understandable. If any of you who read it on here have an opinion about whether the point is clear — or confusing — let me know in the comments. Thanks. And — hopefully — you’ll enjoy it.

A CUP OF JOSEPH DANIELS???

I heard the story this way,
And perhaps it’s mostly true:
That way back when, in World War I,
Coffee’s popularity grew.

It seems a Joseph Daniels,
Navy Secretary then,
Made efforts strong to change some things
And bolster moral men.

He instituted new rules
So Navy guys would think,
And contemplate the consequence
Of inebriating drink.

Banned alcohol consumption,
And, naturally, that led
To stewards brewing coffee more
For sailors to drink instead.

According to the legend,
This mark the guys did toe,
But much disgruntled at their loss,
Nicknamed their coffee “Joe.”


A NEW COFFEE BOOK IS BREWING

photo courtesy of Engin Akyurt @ pixabay.com

I’m working on a new coffee poetry book.  It will include a little more than poems though. I think I’ll use several of the coffee photos and quotes that I used in my coffee lovers journal and intersperse them between the poems. I’ll have to see how the plan works out. Right now, I think it is destined to be more of a “coffee table” book [no pun intended :)] with full color inside. I have loads of coffee poems already written of course, but I have to write some new ones as well. Today, I thought I’d share one of the newest — hot off the press, so to speak.

MY BEVERAGE OF CHOICE

I have a great respect for milk and tea,
And I drink both of them occasion’ly.
I’m not a snob, though some may think me so;
It’s just that I’ve a favorite drink called ‘Joe.’

It’s quite a nickname, that, and quite a tale
Of how it came about, but truth to tell,
That story isn’t pertinent to this rhyme,
So I will share it all another time.

For now, I’d like to focus on my cup.
Its freshly-brewed aroma lifts me up.
The coffee’s hot and black and medium roast.
To celebrate, I’ll make a tasty toast:

To coffee, life’s elixir, piping hot ⸺
The energizing drink that hits the spot.
But comforting as well; it soothes my soul.
My beverage of choice: it wins the poll.


PICK-ME-UP CINQUAIN

Life gets so busy, and I’m finding it harder and harder to post on the website the way I used to. I miss it. And I decided today that it has been entirely too long since I have written some cinquain — or since I have written about coffee. So I decided to combine the two subjects and here’s what I came up with.

photo courtesy of coyot @ pixabay.com

PICK-ME-UP

I need
A pick-me-up.
And I know what will work:
A cup of fragrant, fresh-brewed joy — 
Coffee!

It’s great
At any time.
One cup won’t be enough.
I feel inspired to brew up a
Full pot.

YES!
🙂

 


WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS CHALLENGE – ‘Better Left unsaid’

I came across a new challenge today — well, new to me. It’s hosted by Jim Adams on his WordPress site at this link.   The challenge is to write a story or poem based on the theme “Better Left Unsaid.”  So I’ve let my poet muse have sway and posted my response below.

 

BETTER LEFT UNSAID

I could have told him how I felt
About the lies he’d told behind my back.
I could have spoken out and said
That he a basic moral code did lack.
I could have talked to mutual friends,
And told them scores of ugly things of him.
And when I’d finished, they’d have said
They were inclined to believe all of them.
But once I’d had revenge on him,
What would the outcome be inside of me?
My sinking to his level so
Would mean I was as vile of heart as he.
But if I leave those thoughts unsaid,
I’ll rise above them, so I’ll remain free.


MARCHING BACKWARDS

They say March comes in like a lion
And tippy-toes out like a lamb.
But where I live things are all backwards,
And, frankly, I don’t understand.

When March came along all was quiet;
Our lion must have been asleep.
For weeks we’ve had somnolent weather,
Right up to March’s last week.

Now trash cans are tossed to the neighbor’s;
A box on the porch flies around.
The flagpole is bending way over,
And outside I can’t stand my ground.

This last week of March is so gusty
With all sorts of things on the wing.
Our lion has finally wakened
And now wants to prove he’s still king.


WHAT DO YOU SEE # 123 – ‘VACANCY’

I’m running really late with trying to participate in Sadje’s “What Do You See?” challenge, but I managed to write this little poem before the deadline. As soon as I saw the vacancy sign, I knew I had to write about lost love. The photo is courtesy of Carter Saunders @ unsplash.com.


Copyright Carter Saunders

 

VACANCY

I’m sure the world can see the sign.
It flashes from my eyes.
My heart, which once was full of love,
Now mourns with tears and sighs.

You filled me with your golden love;
At least I thought ’twas so.
But suddenly you took your love
And said you had to go.

You’ve given yourself to someone new;
I’ll never comprehend
How I could have been so deceived
By nothing but pretend.

My heart is vacant now, indeed,
And all the world can tell.
I’ll keep it vacant from now on:
I’ve learned my lesson well.

 


WHAT DO YOU SEE? # 122 – ‘MISSED CALLS’

Sadje’s “What Do You See?” challenge is really a challenge this week. But I decided to take a whimsical approach and came up with this little poem.

photo courtesy of 8maching @ unsplash.com

MISSED CALLS

He lived his life connected
To all of cyberspace.
He swiped and clicked and texted
At an amazing pace.

His phone was an appendage
That never left his grip.
To work, to play, to bathroom — 
It always made the trip.

There were some friends who warned him
That he was too intense;
His focus on that device
Went beyond common sense.

He couldn’t stop himself though.
At every little ‘ding’
He had to stop whatever,
And bow to that darn thing.

Now, years after his passing,
From underneath the sod,
He still can hear that ‘dinging’
From what he’d made his god.

And though beneath the grasses
He lies in somber state,
His claw-like hands reach for it,
But, alas, it is too late.


WHAT DO YOU SEE # 121 – ‘THE CHOICE’

image courtesy of Olga Solodilova @ unsplash.com

The question for this week is “What do I see in this picture?”  Well, I have to say that I see a rejected lover here, and my response is to try to put his feelings into words in a short free verse poem. If you’d like to participate in the WDYS challenge, visit Sadje’s blog here.

*******

THE CHOICE

I dreamed
that you would love me
as I love you.

But now,
even as my flowers
caress you face,

You dream
of someone else;
you are with him.

How then
can I find healing
for my heart?

Sometimes
love causes pain
that can’t be cured.

The choice:
to love and lose
or never love

Remains
for each of us.
I choose to love.

 



ABOUT SNOW # 2

 

I gave you the pretty poems about snow yesterday. Now, I’m going to tell you how I really feel:

 

 

GO WHERE???

I am so tired of ice and snow.
I’d like a way to make them go.
I’d like to send them straight to hell,
But that would cool things off down there.
And when hell freezes over, well,
What happens then it’s hard to tell,
For lots of folks have said they’d do
All kinds of things if that came true.
So, darn, I guess I have to wait
And let things melt at a slow pace.
But if they last much longer here,
I still may send them straight down there.

 


ABOUT SNOW

Well, it’s snowing here in Southern Illinois, USA. We got a thorough cover of ice last night, and now the snowflakes are coming down fast and furious — sort of hurling themselves at the ground, almost as if they are trying to beat each other to the goal. I don’t like snow on the roads and walkways, but I enjoy watching it come down — and I enjoy the fresh, pristine look of everything that is covered in brand new snow. I just wish it could land on only specific areas and leave the others untouched. I’ve written a poem or two about my ambivalent feelings, and I felt like writing another one today. So I decided I’d do a post that is a combination of a few snow poems and snow pictures. The poems are mine, but I’m featuring photos from my good friend Terry Valley, who is a professional photographer in Wisconsin. I hope you enjoy them.

SNOWY CINQUAIN

Snowflakes
On a mission,
Hurling steadfastly down.
Racing each other to their goal:
Whiteout.

*******

THIS IS DREAMING WEATHER

This is dreaming weather.
Nothing much to do
Except to watch the blizzard blow
And have a snack or two.

Yes, this is dreaming weather:
A time to contemplate
And set imagination free
To wander and create.

Ah, this is dreaming weather:
While by the storm confined,
Let my heart and soul take wings
And leave this world behind.

*******

SNOWCHILD

When I was a child, I thought as a child,
And snow was a thing so delightful.
From school we were free; we got wet to the knees,
And our mom’s day was thrown all off schedule.

But now that I’m grown, I must do on my own
All the chores Mom and Dad used to dread:
Stock up food by the loads, drive on slippery roads,
Shovel snow, and repair that old sled.

Now I look with dismay at the skies leaden gray
As I trudge to the store for supplies.
De-icer and salt sell out fast with no halt.
I need new boots to tread on the ice.

The wind from the north is bitter and harsh,
But my temperature, still it is rising;
I am in a foul mood, for I see nothing good
That can come from a snowstorm arriving.

But then the flakes start, and I feel in my heart –
Watching white, fluffy, wonderful, wild
Filling all of my world with such beauty unfurled –
That in truth I am still just a child!

*******


THE SAME GOD TODAY

Photo courtesy of Julian Hacker @ pixabay

I was thinking today about the prophet Ezekiel and his experience in the valley of dry bones, when the Lord told him He would give those bones new life. So I thought I’d share a poem the Lord inspired on the subject. The Scripture reference is Ezekiel, chapter 37.

THE SAME GOD TODAY

Bones in the valley,
Worthless and dry,
Bleached by the sun and
The wind blowing by.

God to the prophet
Did speak and did ask,
“Can these bones still live?
Is it too big a task?”

“Lord,” said the prophet,
“Only You know.”
“I’ll show you, Ezekiel;
My Spirit will blow.

“And cause them to live
And give flesh and skin;
They’ll rise like an army,
Give Me glory again.”

When our problems seem hopeless,
Too dead to restore,
We can look to Ezekiel
And his word from the Lord.

For the God who breathed life
Into bones dry and dead
Is the same God for us
If we’ll trust what He’s said.



Poems At Christmas – # 3

WINTER FRIENDS

I had a little snowman;
His smile was big and wide.
He was a happy snowman,
When I was by his side.

But since it was quite freezing,
I could not stay and play,
And when I had to go in,
He followed me one day.

I hurried to the fireplace
To warm my hands and toes,
And suddenly I found myself
Adrift in melted snow.

My happy little snowman
Had come inside to play,
Not knowing that the warm fire
Would melt him quite away.

But not to worry, dear friends;
I’ve dipped him up you see,
And poured the water outside
Where it will now refreeze.

Then I’ll scoop him back up
Add some fresh snow too,
And mold him back together
So he’ll be good as new.


Poems of Christmas – # 2

IF YOUR TINSEL’S IN A TANGLE

Is your tinsel in a tangle?
Is your wreath hung at an angle?
Are you starting to feel stressed and quite undone?

Is your credit card maxed out?
Are the kids bored, in a pout?
Have you given up the hope of having fun?

Well, forget the tangled messes
And the aggravated voices,
And forget about more shopping that’s not done.

Stop the hassle and the frazzle;
Look away from what bedazzles
To the reason for the season. There’s just one.

Jesus Christ – He is the reason.
His birth brought about the season,
For the Father gave His one and only Son.

If you’ll focus on His coming,
You will hear your heart start humming,
And will find your merry Christmas has begun.


Excerpted from my book of Christmas and winter poems: KEEPING CHRISTMAS.