Rosemary Tonks


The drinkers of coffee


We talk openly, and exchange souls.
Power-shocks of understanding knock us off our feet!
The same double life among the bores and vegetables,
By lamplight in the coffee-houses you have sat it out
Half toad, half sultan, of the rubbish-heap,
You know the dealy dull excitement; the champage sleet
Of living; you know all the kitchen details of my ego's thinking,
When, with our imaginations shuddering.
We move arrogantly into one another's power,
And the last barriers go down between us....


More at home in a jazz pit than with you,
Hotter on the Baltic, when it fries in ice,
Better understood by cattle, grocers, blocks of wood,
My refrigerated body feels the coffin's touch in every word
You utter, and backs away forever from your bed.
You know me far too well, O dustbin of the soul;
My sex, her nerve completely broken by it, has constructed
Barriers, thick walls, never to be battered down.
On the other side (with a last mouthful of the double-dutch to spit!)
She looks away; and in a wholly opposite direction.

Submitted: Thursday, May 08, 2014

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