It was a beautiful village,

the sun was shining,

the mountain air pure,

a perfect place for a coffee.

We could see two cafes,

but the first we tried was closed,

closed for a while by the looks.

The second looked hopeful

with tables and chairs outside

but the door was locked.

An elderly man came over and explained.

that it only opened at weekends.

The other had closed because

the people had left the village.

They all want to live in the town,

he told us

and now the houses are empty

and there are just a few tourists

who come at weekends to drink a coffee

or a beer.

He told us to sit at a table

and went into a house

across the street

and returned with a tray

and three good French coffees

made in his own kitchen.

So we sat in the sunshine

breathing in the pure mountain air,

a perfect place for a coffee

with our new friend.

The Open Arms Anthology, Margate Bookie,


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