October shade thins out what’s left of sun,
reminding us who notice life is short.
I order Tarwebok and choose a table.
Out in this weather, half of them are free.
Slim mothers flaunt spring babies in blue prams.
The artist owing me pretends to blindness.
He edges past, eyes fixed upon the boats
that queue along the quay and out of sight.
A couple and their casual guests stand up.
He cranks, the motor coughs, the guests fall in
the open cockpit. She gives a salty wave
to us ashore, singles up the lines, and hops
upon the bow so slightly, lightly, well
the boats don’t even waddle by the quay
and she and they and sun and boat depart
and I salute another ’t Smalle day.
What I love (and envy) about so many of your poems is your ability to put me into the setting, so I feel as if I’m right beside you watching the goings on. This is another of those poems. Lovely.
Thank you, Elise. Cafe ‘t Smalle is a real place which we would like to show your husband and you if you ever get to Amsterdam.