Call it the United States now,

Maybe always, at least since retirement benefits ….

Those middle-aged to old men who have their morning coffee,

No women at their tables ….


After the sports and weather news, I know the hate and distrust and

ignorance of others, strangers, will smugly and angrily begin and last over

coffee cups ….


These men, white?


Depends on the area, could be Latino or black, and I’d feel the same ….

Go away, get away, turn away ….

Such bitter coffee ….


And today, I neared the table, turned away, looked at the thin moon in the

low east, kept going  ….

To  a distant coffee, the moon higher, dark fading to dawn ….

Newspaper on table, do-nut crumbs ….

TV news: more attacks on the “others,” –


Immigrants, refugees, trans-gender folk ….

Time to leave ….

And down the trail, an owl on a rotted post –

Too much traffic, too many people,

The owl wings away …


Farther on the trail:

Day workers crossing the bridge,

Shoppers, too,

And plasma sellers hundreds ….

I’m not at the table of men,

Not at all ….



Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky late February 2017




Author: Gene Novogrodsky

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.