The poem I wrote at the Caffè Trieste

While renewing my commitment to light verse!

The woman with the yellow cheek, oil pastel by William Eaton, Radio Bean, Burlington, VT, Oct 2018
The woman with the yellow cheek, oil pastel by William Eaton, Radio Bean, Burlington, VT, Oct 2018N.B.: The Caffè Trieste is a famous literary spot in North Beach, San Francisco. You order at the counter, they call your name when your coffee and pastries are ready, and, ideally, you then come the counter to collect them! Trieste in Italia: three syllables, the last rhyming roughly, say, with “eh.”

Abigail and Susie
You’d best shake a leg, eh?
Your coffee’s a coolin’
At the Caffè Trieste.

Abigail and Susie
Give your guidebooks a rest, eh?
Your food it is ready
At the Caffè Trieste.

Abigail and Susie
Of you we pray
Tomorrow’s selfies’ll look like today’s
If you still patronize the Caffè Trieste.

Abigail and Susie
Your number’s up at this café
You’re getting too famous and
This poem’s waylaid!

Abigail and Susie
Don’t let your pastries rot away
The sun’s blessed the windows
It’s no time for a siest-é
They’re crying for you at the Caffè Trieste!
 
— Poem and drawing by William Eaton

∩ The Caffè Trieste, established in 1956 in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood, was the West Coast’s first espresso coffee house. It became a meeting place for Beat movement poets and prose writers such as Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Alan Watts, Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Richard Brautigan, Bob Kaufman, Gregory Corso, Michael McClure, Kenneth Rexroth and Neeli Cherkovski.

Is there a connection between light verse and coffee? See The Ballad of Don and Dee.

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