Autumn Sky Poetry . . . Number 21 . . .
 

In Praise of Coffee

     by David Oestreich



          — after Christopher Smart



For I will exult in the gift of coffee.

For it wakens each human sense with joy.

For firstly, its aroma is deep, with palpable comfort.

For secondly, its percolation speaks promise.

For thirdly, when it is poured or stirred, one may observe its robust body.

For fourthly, it warms the hands of even those unloved.

For fifthly, it tastes of the several elements.

For it refreshes as water.

For it is the fruit of earth.

For it is strengthened by resisting the wind while upon the branch.

For the sun imbues it with fire mistakenly called bitterness.

For without the state of heightened awareness it provides, I might forget to be thankful of a morning.

For it contains a pleasant stimulant.

For caffeine is, perhaps, the only remaining drug unregulated by the government.

For, unbeknownst to them, it has saved the life of many an irritating co-worker.

For my employer maintains a ready supply.

For, despite a sharp and sudden rise some months ago, its price has now stabilized.

For even Wal-Mart offers it in an impressive number of varieties.

For the tins in which it comes, when empty, offer hours of amusement to my children.

For I myself have used them to carry worms when fishing.

For it has given us many a delightful cultural icon.

For who cannot find pleasure in considering Robert Young, Juan Valdez, or Mr. Coffee.

For we will all agree that there are worse things in the world than Starbucks.

For its industry helps to relieve the poverty of small nations abroad.

For without it, life holds too few opportunities to consume cream and sugar.

For it is an excellent excuse to eat cake in the morning.

For it elevates pudding and crackers to tiramisu.

For it may be brewed in simplicity.

For the mere mixture of gleaming crystals with hot water may produce it.

For it may be brewed in startling complexity.

For one may roast and grind the beans oneself.

For time would fail were I to detail the wonders of Galão, frappé, and espresso.

For it is the modern equivalent of the peace pipe.

For it encourages communication.

For it puts one at ease with oneself and the world.










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David Oestreich lives in northwest Ohio with his wife and three children where they subsidize their local library through substantial late fees. His work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Minnetonka Review, Ruminate, Hobble Creek Review, and Tar River Poetry.


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© 2011 David Oestreich