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Long Black Life

Long Black Life

Sitting with this coffee; stopping to take a drink
Taste buds embarking on a journey
Nostrils stirring the mind, to think

Whisked away to a colonial land on a hot and sticky day
The breeze whipping through the cane fields
The cracking of the sugar cane, harvesting raw table land prey

Breathing in the aroma, condensation forms on my glasses
Blown away on a cloud to a plantation far away
But another day in the jungle; for the conscripted masses

Kin to the coffee crema, they clamber aboard a boat
Behind them a trail through the duckweed verdure
Agitating their way to somewhere yet more remote

The creatures of the forest call out in protest
As the river gulps at the pint sized boat
The whirlpool sounds of the samba, the drumbeat to the daily rote

Howling their orders, parrot fashion
The crack of the whip, the spilling of passion
Every moment, every hour, every back breaking week

Bubbles bursting on the crema, Peasants heads bobbing like pistons
Mile after mile, row after row,
Blisters on top of blisters, as the coffee bean cash crop they sow

So dark, so awe inspiring, so exotic, so aromatic
Somehow lost in the stirring motion
Spinning round and round and round, sinking down

Forcing down another torturous gulp
Slowly, painfully, the head tilts back
A strong taste of drudgery; a sharp tang of a horsewhip crack

Twanging on the tongue, an insipid reminder;
Drying up in pure distaste
A lifetime enslaved to the coffee habit of a culture conditioned to waste

Long Black Life


Narre Warren, Australia

  • Artist

Artist's Description

Not Fair Trade.

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