by Lynn White
It was a beautiful village,
the sun was shining,
the mountain air pure,
a perfect place for a coffee.
We could see two cafés,
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.
First published in Erothanatos, Vol 2, Issue 4, October 2018
PHOTO: Saint-Béat village, Haute-Garonne department, France. The village is in southern France, near the border of Spain. Photo by Père Igor (2010), used by permission.
NOTE: Haute-Garonne is a department in the Occitanie Region of Southern France. Named after the Garonne River, its prefecture and main city is Toulouse, the country’s fourth-largest. Haute-Garonne is one of the original 83 departments created on March 4, 1790 during the French Revolution.
NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This was written about one of the villages in the Haute-Garonne area, near Toulouse, France, in the spring of 2001.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lynn White lives in north Wales. Her work is influenced by issues of social justice and events, places and people she has known or imagined. She is especially interested in exploring the boundaries of dream, fantasy, and reality. She was shortlisted in the Theatre Cloud “War Poetry for Today” competition and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and a Rhysling Award. Her poetry has appeared in many publications, including Apogee, Firewords, Capsule Stories, Light Journal, and So It Goes. Find Lynn at lynnwhitepoetry.blogspot.com and on Facebook.