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French Quarter coffee shop; ancient, transformed
corner-building with a long view, a cloudy morning
post-Saturday revelry, mingling with locals, the
normal eclectic folks of ‘The Quarter’ just being;

an older man, oblivious, sketches in a large pad,
a young woman writes in a leather-clad journal,
multiple laptops are in use, a variety of newspapers
strewn about, left graciously for whomever by others
my battered pocket notebook fills as my cup drains

Gawker tourists slow down while passing, eyeing
through eight-foot windows the local flavor,
animatedly debating the merits of stopping in
for a true New Orleans coffee experience wondering,
in their own pseudo-Bohemian ways, their personal
worthiness, unaware they already possess it

I was that gawker, not so long ago; stranger in a very
strange land, outsider in awe of the mystique

Now, some five years later, I sit at a table turned,
so to speak; on the inside looking out;
showing up just often enough, comfortable enough
in my status as local gawkee that I get the occasional
smile or nod from the genuine authentic I encounter

Not yet a true insider, I am enough ease that I blend
in with the locals, also understanding well the allure
from the other side of tempered glass, grateful that
I succumbed to the siren song that is the city of
New Orleans, wondering how many of those gazing
from outside will eventually be as charmed?

I want to get up, invite them to come on in, or to tell
them just stay there for a while, to let me watch them
watching me fill my notebook, as I have coffee to drink,
and plenty of blank pages to fill with newly inspired ink.

About poetluckerate

I am a poet, writer and teacher who moved from Minnesota to New Orleans in 2008 to help rebuild the worst public school system in America. It is a huge challenge to say the least. Now, after ten years, I have returned home to my native Midwest. Writing - in many different forms and ways - has saved me untold thousands in therapy bills throughout the years. Reading my writings may do either the same - or just the opposite - for you. Read at your own risk, as I do not offer writer malpractice insurance. ;-{) I hope you enjoy what you read here.
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