Coffee at Coledale

you escape from home during a real estate inspection,

a table outside chedo's  special: croatian spit roast.

focused on perfection, you adjust chedo's doormats,

move the sea-blue dog bowl one-half centimetre to the right.

a white cab glides to a stop

a woman in slippers and a belted coat steps out

more skim, flat and white than your coffee –

no longer hot, her ends split and roasted.

you redraw the parting in her hair, correct two spelling errors

on the blackboard menu, adjust the waitress's apron

& straighten the cab's antenna.

the woman sidles out of the-shop-with-the-

heineken-sign  two shopping bags clink

into the ample storage space in the boot.

the woman stumbles into the back seat

(you iron the surf calm as a silk sarong –

white caps & whales have no place

at a real estate inspection)

the cab slides away on automatic.

We Know the Coal Coast claims the real estate billboard.

Griffith Review