Two Poets Cross at the Tuff Bean Cafe

I’ve collaborated with my good friend Basilike Pappa on the poem below. Visit her lovely blog Silent Hour to see more of her work.

Two Poets Cross at the Tuff Bean Cafe

“Let’s try this again,” said he.
“What’s there to gain?” said she.

“I could buy you a coffee,” said he.
“And lead to catastrophe?” said she.

“Look,” said he. “I’m sorry about the other day.”
“Good,” said she. “Then I’ll take a cafe au lait.”

“I like a woman who knows what she wants,” said he.
“I like a man who knows when he’s wrong,” said she.

“Shall we sit and talk it out?” said he.
“You read my thoughts out loud,” said she.

“I still feel your hand across my cheek,” said he.
“As do I the marks of your critique,” said she.

“But I like your style, your rhythm, your voice in verse,” said he.
“Then I suppose I like your choice of words,” said she.

“You know,” said he. “I’d love to rhyme you line for line.”
“That so?” said she. “You couldn’t keep up if you tried.”


by Basilike Pappa & Ryan Dowling

Mixed Strains

Mixed Strains

“It’s cold in here,” she says.
“I live alone,” says he.

“And your walls, they are so bare,” she says.
“They’re not what I’m looking at,” says he.

“Am I your first guest?” she says.
“You are my first choice,” says he.

“You don’t mean you…” she says.
“Of course, I’d never…” says he.

“May I have a drink?” she says.
“I’ll make it double,” says he.

“I don’t want to give you the wrong idea,” she says.
“How could you give me what I already have?” says he.

“Let’s skip the liquor and go to coffee,” she says.
“Shall we go all night?” says he.

“I have to work,” she says.
“I’m being a jerk,” says he.

“Oh, please don’t say that,” she says.
“You may leave anytime,” says he.

“Why do you behave like this?” she says.
“Why do you make me like this?” says he.

“Maybe I should leave,” she says.
“Oh, don’t say that,” says he.

“It’s cold in here,” she says.
“I live alone,” says he.


by Ryan Dowling