Friday, 13 December 2013

Coffee Talk

Overheard: That’s her. She’s here every day eavesdropping on people’s conversations.

Where it took me: I continue to be fascinated by the blurred line between public and private. If you choose a public place for a private conversation, you may be compromising your right to privacy. If you don’t want others to hear, don’t speak loudly enough for them to be part of the conversation.

The poem

Coffee Talk

At first, nothing but
bean-grind and steam-wheeze,
sneaker-squeaks, heel-taps.
Bells over the opening door.
Horns and the Doppler effect
of traffic passing.
Just below 70 decibels,
the ear attunes.

It’s mostly murmur and mumble —
I realized the problem …
everyone deserves a chance …
so you broke up …
just go with it …
we call it football … —
until your raised voice forgets
its public place,
releases secrets from stage-whispers.


  1. I stumbled onto this page, and just wanted to say- please keep writing. I devoured all of your poems in about half an hour of happy happy reading :)

  2. I'm so glad you enjoyed! You can find the earlier poems (if you didn't already) at