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More Coffee & Philosophy

Another Book of Poetry


Frank C. Ray, IV

Copyright © 2018 – Frank C. Ray, IV

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Thank you for your support.

For my darling wife

Who inspires me daily

I love you so much


My first book, Coffee & Philosophy: A Book of Poems, came about strictly as a desire to have something published. Since then, I’ve been trying to figure out how to follow it up. Well, along came National Poetry Writing Month, (NaPoWriMo for short,) and I decided to throw my hat into the ring. I figured if I managed to successfully complete a poem a day for the entire month of April, I’d have enough material to make a decent follow-up book, and here we are.

Much like my first book, I’ve stuck to poems strongly influenced by my possibly misguided understanding of various Japanese forms of poetry, and their rather rudimentary Americanized interpretations. I’ve since learned that my original definitions aren’t quite accurate, and that the syllable counts maybe aren’t quite as rigid as I had once thought, but part of the fun for me is adhering to those rigid counts.

There is one strong departure from my previous book, however. There is no table of contents because I have not divided the poems based on their structure as I did in my first book. The poems appear in the order they were written, so the first poem represents the early start I got on March 31st, and the 30 poems that follow were written one per day in April.

My Morning Love

My eyes are heavy

The alarm is very loud

I leave my bedroom

But it is against my will

I smell you brewing

Your warm scent calls to my soul

Oh, dark elixir

Let me drink and be revived

Clear away the sleep-filled fog

Morning Trauma

Mornings trick the eyes

All tubes of goo look the same

That wasn’t toothpaste

Questions and Answers

The man had questions

He asked if there was reason

No-one dared reply

He asked if there were rings

Of course there were rings

He asked, "Do you take this man?"

You said, "Yes, I do."

He asked, "And you, this woman?"

My reply matched yours

The man stopped asking questions

And declared us to be one

The List

Needed eggs and milk

I double-checked the pantry

Made myself a list

Went to the market

Checked my list before I left

Still need eggs and milk

True North

Is truth absolute?

Does the situation change

And alter what is moral?

God’s Word is truth

And points us to what is good

As a compass points to north

Photographic Evidence

Worth a thousand words

The photograph’s claim to fame

But Google one word

And thousands of images

Shall appear before your eyes

Following the Form

I have no control

Syllables dictate line length

So I must conform


The mind is at war

Logic versus Emotion

Only one may rule

The mind is at peace

Planning balancing Impulse

Both ruling as one

A Mystical Analysis

Science and Magic

Chemistry and Alchemy

What separates them?

Cold hard facts and mystic faith?

Maybe they’re the same

One expresses what we know

And inquires, “How?”

What we don’t yet understand

Is the other’s realm

And it asks, “What if?” and, “Why?”

Without the latter

The former would never be

Both reason and faith would fade

Size Isn’t Everything

The phone in my hand

Can do more than computers

That once filled whole rooms


The world does not stop

Time continues to progress

But I pause to rest

Clairvoyance? Never Heard of Her

I’m not omniscient

I cannot see the future

For I am not God

Where I Live

My home is sturdy

It keeps out the elements

And protects what I hold dear

True Value

Two birds in my hand

One in the bush is worth more

For it can fly free

Singing its song for us all

Making the world more joyful

Seagulls, Sharks, & Rowboats

Dreaming of seagulls

A journey just beginning

Ready to depart

Or perhaps one at its end

Destination reached

Dreaming of a shark

A fear of the uncertain

Clouds your mind and soul

But to dream of a rowboat

That’s just a little dinghy

Tarnished Benevolence

Intentions matter

Good deeds are often tainted

By selfish motives

Winning? What’s That?

Pawn takes Bishop

Knight captures Pawn, Check and Mate

Yep, I lost again

The Devious Mother

“Open wide!” she said

He obeyed most readily

“Now, Son! Bite down quick!”

Crunch! Crunch! Crunch! And Munch! Munch! Munch!

Then she said to him,

“Didn’t that cricket taste good?”

Peanut brittle was ruined.

Morning Anticipation

My cup is empty

I start the coffee brewing

The aroma is a tease

Making me despise the wait

As the coffee perks

But patience is rewarded

When at last my cup is full

Angst & Apathy

Restless and pacing

The caged lion seeks escape

Roaring at his prison’s bars

A lion that’s caged

Roaring only for his meals

No longer seeks his freedom

Naturally Speaking

Order is a myth

Only by sustained upkeep

Is Chaos suppressed

Order is supreme

Cycles and patterns emerge

With nature unchecked

Vain Excuses

I cannot help you

You must learn to help yourself

I am too busy

I must do important things

I’m focused on me

Your needs are a distraction

I can’t waste more time

My ego feels neglected

And my pride says you’ll be fine

The Soldier’s Watch

Your watch is broken

It says it’s thirteen o’ clock

You need a new one

Silly civilian

It shows military time

It means one p.m.


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The Cause of Daydreams

My mind likes to roam

Without saying where it’s bound

Chasing random thoughts

Warning Label

Handle carefully

To avoid unpleasantness

Provide with coffee

Waiting for Warmth

Spring came weeks ago

But Winter just won’t let go

Perhaps Summer will prevail

The Fool

The Fool, he wanders

Greatest and Least all at once

Though he wanders free

He chooses not his own fate

In this he earns his title

Late Spring

On March twenty-first

The Equinox came and went

But Spring was timid

Winter’s icy grip held fast

Keeping warmth at bay

But today things seemed to change

Winter grows weary

And Spring has taken over

Better late than not at all

The Great Tree

The Great Tree stands firm

Deep roots firmly anchoring

Branches bending to the wind

The Tree does not fear

Neither does it hope or yearn

It simply endures its fate

Information Overload

Small bits of knowledge

Most of them quite trivial

Filling up my mind

Pushing out what’s important

Like where I left my car keys


The End

Other titles by Frank C. Ray, IV

Coffee & Philosophy: A Book of Poetry

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