Café writing tour #212 and a seven-day serve

Seven-day serve of writing prompts, that is. This morning, I’m here at Café La Montagna, in the kind of fresh that only the Blue Mountains can deliver in July. coffeeLa M is a regular and a favourite, seeing that the coffee here is made with a lot of love and a lot of skill (the food is good, too). Let me just – excuse me, I’m just, I have to take another sip –

There is always love in the coffee here. The bright and lively man makes it that way for all the fabulous people that come to his counter/tables/booths. He has a pretty good team around him. We are all welcome, he is always glad we came. And yes sure, this is a commercial venture, but let’s mention anything vulgar, like money. He likes humanity, and it shows.

I only remember one time when there was something missing from the coffee. The love, actually. I remember coming in, and seeing he was sad. Not crying, not moping, just – so far gone inside of himself that sad was all you could feel. I wondered what had happened to him that morning. Who had taken his Live and Brightly and stepped on it, crushing it carelessly? I wanted to sort that person out, throw some stern words about. Not because of the impact on my coffee (no, really – not for that), but because…well. He was so sad, and for someone so usually…the opposite, it was hard to watch. I wanted to restore him, or see him restored to his natural state, or, like any time you see someone broken, do something to help make sure that their road back to contentment isn’t arduous or over-long. Today it is good to see him, vibe intact and cheerful as the day will be long. Or you know, given it’s Winter, short or long days are academic at this point in time. But you know what I mean.

All this over a barista, I hear you say. Yes. Coffee is one of those things that can bind us all together.

Seven-day serve of writing prompts

Day 1 (#291)

You host a weekly radio show in a town on the far north coast. This week you’ve scored a live interview with the coach of the Sydney Kings basketball team, who are in town for a friendly with the local rep side. During the interview, your best friend calls in to the show, distraught: he’s just broken up with his girlfriend. The coach chimes in and says…

Day 2 (#093)

You come home to find your mother sitting in your loungeroom, asleep in the easy chair. In sleep she is serene. Her hands, hands you know so well, are folded around a letter. She is fast asleep and doesn’t hear you come in. As you watch her chest rise and fall evenly, her grip on the letter eases, and the pages slip to the floor. They are hand-written, in a man’s hand, and not one you recognise. You hesitate for a moment.

Day 3 (#121)

He stood so close to the booth that his forehead rested on the glass. Each breath he took, fogged the window briefly, then vanished. The woman on the other side of the glass punched the battered keyboard, chewing gum, her heavy black-rimmed glasses sliding down her nose. She finished punching and without looking, reached over to the printer. She sighed and rolled her eyes with bored impatience. He watched the printer head shoot back and forth; he was shifting from foot to foot now. His face flushed, he watched as she tore the paper from the printer bar and slid it under the vent opening beneath the glass toward him.

Day 4 (#125)

Write a poem where each line is a line from a different poem, or where each line is a line from a different song.

Day 5 (#207)

‘If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.’

Mother used to say that all the time when I was young. It used to frustrate me and my brother no end. As we got older, she stopped with the admonitions, but it struck me one day – she never had said a lot. Especially when Dad’s sister came over. I’ve since wondered – was it her golden rule that stopped her? What would she have said?

Day 6 (#287)

You’ve been on a few dates with a guy/girl you met online, and you both realise how much each likes the other. So when he asks you back to his place, you agree, smiling. You arrive at his place; he goes through to the kitchen and turns on the lights. You cannot believe what your eyes are seeing. You smile and say you have to freshen up. Once in the bathroom, you begin to text your friend. Write your texts and her replies.

Day 7 (#085)

‘Finally made it down the aisle

Drawn by your heart, your love, your smile

Absolutely worth the wait

I’m with you now; I’ll shut the gate.

Not that we needed it sealed like this

The wedding clothes, the vows, the kiss –

For all my life I’ll promise you this:

I’ll be your best alternative.’

Who has written this? And why?


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