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Silver Birch Press is pleased to announce the February 2013 publication of the poetry chapbook COFFEE HOUSE CONFESSIONS by Ellaraine Lockie — a collection of poems written in and about coffee houses throughout the world.

“I know no one else who manages to combine quantity of poems with quality the way Ellaraine Lockie does. She is a font of creative ideas and brings the ultimate in craft and experience to the realizing of those products of inspiration, observation, and research. I admire her work immensely.” GERALD LOCKLIN, Professor Emiritus of English at California State University, Long Beach

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ellaraine Lockie is a widely published and awarded poet, nonfiction book author, and essayist. Coffee House Confessions is her tenth poetry chapbook. Her recent books have received the Best Individual Collection Award from Purple Patch magazine in England, the San Gabriel Poetry Festival Chapbook Prize, and The Aurorean‘s Chapbook Pick. She teaches poetry workshops and serves as Poetry Editor for the lifestyles magazine, Lilipoh. Ellaraine writes every morning in a coffee shop no matter where she is in the world.

Find Coffee House Confessions by Ellaraine Lockie at Amazon.com.

Cover photo by Nick Warzin. Find him at nickwarzin.com.

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“I have measured out my life with coffee spoons...”

From “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot

Coming soon from Silver Birch Press — a modern take on coffee, coffee houses, and coffee spoons: COFFEE HOUSE CONFESSIONS, a chapbook of 26 poems by Ellaraine Lockie. A poem from the collection is featured below.

IN THE PRIVACY OF PUBLIC

Two women sit silent
surrounded by the clamor of the coffee shop
Matching shades of sandy blonde hair
The same sea-green eyes
Except the younger pair
stare through rims red as coral
into some far-off horizon
The light in them drowned
 
Beacons in the older set
Her hand stretched
across the table stroking the other woman’s
folded arm that holds up her chin
Only one blink when saltwater eyes
are dabbed with a napkin
 
The ice in one glass has melted
Coffee across from it would be cold
Yet the rubbing does not ebb
Something horrible here that can be alluded to
only through an umbilical cord
And perhaps only in the privacy of public

Note: Silver Birch Press will publish Coffee House Confessions by Ellaraine Lockie in November 2012.

Cover photo: Nick Warzin, nickwarzin.com

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NEXT SUMMER
Poem by Joan Jobe Smith

The peaches turned out small this year—
no bigger than apricots.
No one wanted to eat them
one bite off each wasn’t worth it.
I picked them
left the ones on the tree
the butcher birds and meadowlarks
had bitten into, the ants crawling on them,
the funny-looking flies coveting them.
And I left the ones that had fallen onto
the ground, rotting now, because I
liked the way it made the backyard smell.
No one wanted to help me peel them
and slice them because it took
so much time—and I ate some
the ones with a worm on one side
the ones bruised on one side until
my teeth felt sweet and slick
and icy. I let them set overnight
and in the morning the nectar
buoyed the peaches like fat dumplings
in sauce; and I only added a little honey
to thin out the juice so that the peaches
would go farther. When
the crust had browned
and the cobbler removed from the oven
and cooled some in front of the open window
we all ate a bowlful although
it was almost suppertime
and we talked about the things we’ll do with them
next summer when the peaches are bigger.

Painting by June Marie. Find her work here.

Note: “Next Summer” originally appeared in The Wormwood Review:68 — an issue that also featured the work of Charles Bukowski and future U.S. poet laureate Billy Collins. The poem will appear in the upcoming Silver Birch Press release Charles Bukowski Epic Glottis: His Art, His Women (&me) by Joan Jobe Smith.