Cup of Joe

Americano

Machiato

Espresso

Cortado

Ristretto

Coffee. A way of life to some, and to others a means to fuel each hazy morning. From the millennial sipping on their instagrammable paper cup to the middle aged mechanic with his morning brew – we all have a little time for a cup of  Arabica.  Myself for example, I’ve had a tumultuous relationship with it. Starting out like most-  with an utter disgust for the smell let alone taste – reminding me of my french teacher : a certain je ne sais pas.

Then I reached 16 and it was  cool to have an iced drink doused in sugar, cream and syrup. I realised quickly that this was not sustainable for both my health and wallet at almost 3.50 a pop. Exams came and the next rung up Jacob’s ladder was the warm embrace of a hot, smooth milky latte – essentially an adult milkshake, not proper coffee but not all milk – so 100% judgement free!

And then one summer I became a fully fledged adult – I moved on to the big boy – a nice, fresh Cup of Joe.

But how does a cup of coffee become anthropomorphised into Joe? And why Joe and not Tom, Dick or Harry?

The origins of this phrase are thought to originate on the sails of the American Navy in the early 20th century . Josephus Daniels held the elusive role of Secretary of the Navy and his lasting legacy was that of banning alcohol on navy ships.   Like flotsam, the sailors found themselves lost at sea and so replaced a cold beer with plenty of hot coffee – naming it aptly after the man causing their caffeine fuelled vendetta.

Another belief is that Joe is used to represent that it is a drink of any man and everyman – Joe around the corner enjoys a coffee so why shouldn’t you?

All I know is that life is too short for bad coffee – in an instant it will all be over . All the memories of the past will filter through your mind and you’ll ask yourself if given another shot would you have done anything differently?

Open your eyes – it’s time to wake up and smell the coffee.

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This Is A Shot In The Dark

I don’t know how long I’ve been writing poetry for – I’m not very open about it and I don’t really know why. But I thought I’d take a “shot in the dark” and share a recent poem with you. I wanted to write a poem which reflected aspects of my faith and so I wrote this poem as a reminder to myself to not forget who I am, my principles and my dreams- that is to have faith in myself, to have faith in my sprit. I’m still working on a title, but for now I’ve just called it:

ME

There is a story that only I can tell,
For I am the author – so listen well.
It is almost time for me to depart,
So my son let me tell you my tale right from the start.

When I was young I did not really know,
Who I was, but hoped that it would show.
I tried to be what was expected of me,
I moulded myself to what I thought I ought to be.

I am my own master , yet I was ruled.
But my child freedom beats through me – do not be fooled !
There was a wind which each day howled to me
that I was the champion of my own destiny.

The years rolled on but still I had hope,
that one day my wildest desires and I would elope.
Others laughed and told me such was life,
to not be a dreamer and continue this strife.

My leathered body now aged as you see –
a victim to time , she has been a temptress to me.
It takes many a year to be accustomed to change
and so the silence of old age revealed to be strange.

But it is here that my journey begins,
where my soul and I do become friends.
In the quiet I realised –
that this friend has always been by my side.

And who is this, my son I hear you say,
this companion I speak of whom I met in old age ?
Alas he was with me all along,
He was the pulsing beat to the melody of my song.

He was the magic that blinded me when I was young,
He was the poet who’s dreams to me were sung.
He was the niggling that ached in middle age.
And now my son, he is my spirit – free from its cage.