20 Lines A Day

A Community of Writers and Photographers

Coffee Shop Circumstances

Thursday night and almost full

Silently I study the view

From a “comfy chair” in the corner.

Circumstances have made me a

Regular of sorts

But I only recognize one old guy

Kibitzing too long with the barista

Wearing the same bright yellow shirt as last night.

The couple playing Munchkin

are oblivious.   Belonging more at a kitchen table but

good for them.  I envy their comfort.

Mr. Superman T-shirt commands the

study group at the large table too comfortable with the girl

to be just friends.

Random jazz fills the gaps -

The old guy bites his nails.

The man at the counter is all business while

two couples chat and flirt

away from the kids?

away from the bar?

maybe just away.

With jazz and superman and munchkins,

I drink in what I can of coffee

and time and circumstance

1 Comment

Mr. Sandwich Shop Guitar Man

I see you
      Turn your pages
I hear you
      Sing your songs
But I know
      You are not here with me

You are not here
      Next to the soda kiosk
         Where thirsty patrons
         Bashfully avoid eye contact
         While cupping ice and drink

You are not here
      Across from the counter
         Of energetic salami assemblers
         Who call your name
         At the end of each song

You are not here
      Near the booth
         Where the father asks
         For Puff the Magic Dragon
         Confused when you say you don’t know it

Mr. Sandwich Shop Guitar Man

I see you
      On a different stage
      At a different time

Without the air of
      Pickles and potato chips

Without the air of
      Tired moms and milk shakes

Without the air of
      Longing to be singing
      Anywhere but here
      Anywhere but here

But here you are
      Singing to the sandwiches
      Turning pages to find a tune
      Perfect for a ham and swiss
      Perfect for a pickle
      Perfect for Jackie Paper
         And his dad
         And the counter jockeys
         Who call your name
         And bring you back

So your journey
   May begin

(c) 2010, Norman Dziedzic Jr.

December’s Denouement

I actually started this on 12/1 but had to force myself to finish it today…

Autumn exhales, long and slow
Spent - by the harvest
And the felling of leaves;
Tugging at the last brown stragglers.

The barren maples and birch
Palaver on winter preparations
Warily eyeing the constant conifers
Who hold tight their secrets.

Time is ever even but our division
Shifts toward the night. Drifts
From the light to algid evenings
Descending toward the solstice. 

And then, though imperceptible
Days stretch for the celebrations
Late in the season, late in the year.
December's denouement.

(c) 2012, Norman Dziedzic Jr.


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