at the coffee house,
we absently spoke of drawing
I took exception to the manner
in which you drew hands,
you make them look like machines.
Citing Ingres, I plotted a continuous line.
eying the young
who hovered near decorative book stacks,
muttered a condescending remark
about nose rings, poets, and tattoos.
But you refused to objectify or malign,
such is the nature
of this establishment and of youth.
and silently stroked socratic beards
as the artifice of conversation
for awhile longer, into longer
pauses over a couple of dollars worth
of cooling Ethiopian harari.
2River View, 1_4 (Summer 1997)