A Cup Of Java And A Couple Of Sinkers [1920's Slang] Poem by R.K. Cowles

R.K. Cowles

hudson falls, new york

A Cup Of Java And A Couple Of Sinkers [1920's Slang]

I departed my abode

Into a rain pitchfork

And ankled along this street

I’ve been grummy all morning

Anticipating a bee’s knees day

I verify I have at least a clam

In my kick

To pay for the java and couple of sinkers

At the local café
First I’ll ankle to the direction of

The drug Store for ciggies

My cigarette case contains none

They stock my Abracrombies
A couple of flappers pass by

As they lit up like the common wealth

It appears they’re arriving home late

Both with bobbed hairs

One woe a toque, the other a cloche

Both are a couple of live wires

I’m familiar with both

Both have copacetic stilts

I sneak a glance at each

Because I have a fetish for female stilts

Wow, I would love to message all four

Of those stilts

Farther down these travels upon the street
In front of a restaurant
A rag-a-muffin man was playing

“S’Wonderful” with a hurdy-gurdy

With a bug-eyed betty fitted with a pill box

And a dress that hung midway down her gams

Stood lending her ears to this vagabond

I could acknowledge that this face stretcher

Was a flour lover

She had on too much munitions on her face

As an iron whizzes by

Giving me the screamie meanies for a second

It almost took me off my dogs

Then before I could cross the street

Couple of buses passes by

The second had a couple in its struggle buggy spooning

It’s possible the couple may be a couple I am acquainted with
Once I arrive to the joint

To order my java and a couple of sinkers

I noticed four fellas in the distant nook

That appears to be old acquaintances

Who appears to be hoods

I could see a tomato in her evening dress

With her hair in a marcel cut

Over the bench lays an coat

A man seated with her

In a three piece striped suit

I imagine it’s her sheik

Alongside her coat was another made of camel hair

Looks as though it’s a coat

Spats were on his shoes

Upon a Victrola the tune

“When My Baby Smiles At Me” was playing

Unexpectedly couple fellas from the back

Rushed to the front and pulled a rod each

Then I noticed a group of shamuses

Had the joint surrounded

Giving it the heat

I took cover in one of the booths

I realized this woman was this cake-eater’s moll

She also pulled out a rod

Along with the big cheese

Both leapt out of the booth and started to pump metal

At least neither the hoods nor the coppers

Had typewriters

As I lay in the booth beneath the table

During this squirting of metal I ponder

If I’ll wind up on a slab

Or am I’ll be able to perform a Dillinger

Apparently they have a juice joint

In the back of this shop

Once it all came to a halt

The coppers believed me to be one of the gang

I attempted to explain

Yet they believed me to be full of hooey

All they say was “Tell it to Sweeny”

Then they gave me the business

Off to the hoosegow I go

I realized the start of this day

Has not came out Jake

And all I wanted was

A cup of java and a couple of sinkers

This poem appears in my book 'Slang Poetry Volume I' on Lulu.com. It appears in the 1920 slang section of the book.

R.K. Cowles

hudson falls, new york
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