the morning cup


1. Eerie, the ghosts in my haunted coffee.  Corpsey hands push through the grave-dirt, an exhalation, the spirits of grass snakes and killer whales.

2. I was kind of shocked when I first came across the bums, huddled around their barrel-fire in the bottom of my coffee cup.  The guy wearing the blue bandanna and missing his eye tooth keeps yelling at the other two that they’ve got to “Peel the skin off of the marshmallow and make me a goddamn hat right now!”

3. Krakatoa.  Vesuvius.  Pinatubo.  Oshima.  Cotopaxi.  Mount Saint Helens.  Kīlauea. Mauna Loa.  Sakurajima.  Mount Nyiragongo.

4. It was across moors like this that the Wolf Man came walking.

Even a man who is pure in heart
and says his prayers by night
may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms
and the autumn moon is bright.

5. “The idea of using boiling water to produce mechanical motion has a long history, going back about 2,000 years. Early devices were not practical power producers, but more advanced designs producing usable power have become a major source of mechanical power over the last 300 years, enabling the Industrial Revolution, beginning with applications for mine water removal using vacuum engines.”

6. When I woke up in the morning, there were a dozen snow monkeys in my coffee cup.  They were exceedingly friendly and I found myself becoming fond of their red faces and the bits of frost hanging off of their bearded chins.  Still, the coffee tasted a little bit funny.

7. 霧が来ました。香りは森の海の星の。あの夜で僕の夢は弓の形に成った。

8. I was awakened by cannon fire and surprised to find two armies, lined up against one another, facing off inside my coffee cup.  The one army was clothed in a chartreuse uniform, almost precisely the color of an old Mepps Saltwater Timber Doodle.  The other army wore an orange so shocking that even Chester Cheetah blushed.  What the war was about, I’ll never know.

9.  Cirrocumulus.  Nimbostratus.  Cumulonimbus.  Cirrus duplicatus.  Cirrus floccus.  Iwashigumo.  Cirrostratus undulatus.  Altostratus lenticularis.  The mackerel sky.


4 Responses to “the morning cup”

  1. 10. Enjoyed peeking inside your brain this morning, but you may have had too much caffeine already. :)

    • 2 Trane DeVore

      Thanks for dropping by! It may seem like I’ve had too much coffee, but actually my brain is much more likely to do this kind of thing when I haven’t had enough coffee, rather than when I’ve had too much.

  2. There should be a law that requires this poem to be posted in every coffee shop in america. Nay, Nay, every place that serves coffee or anyplace that one might find coffee.
    Brilliant piece.

    • 4 Trane DeVore

      Thanks for the comment, Greg. Maybe each coffee shop could do their own, local version of this kind of thing. It would be interesting to see how the different imaginings of what could possibly go on inside a coffee cup take shape and change throughout different locales.

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