Did We Drink Weak Tea?

Do you remember the one 
we met who stoked the sparks, tinder, 
and letters into flaming embers 
while we sipped a steaming tea?
 
In a blaze of fiery “fact”    
the one explained that this is that and that is this, 
and that that is logically saying this while also explaining that. 

The one paused to meditate after the first monologue    
we heard that night—what we thought we 
heard, what at that time so amazed us.

And then the one relaunched discourse; 
we were seemingly powerless in the face of the fervor, 
never wondering if in the absence 
of any other wisdom we were forgetting something….

something.
 
I remember as we stared in silence  
into the enflamed speech with its burning pinecones of sense,
we were entranced by the logic of the voice.  
  
The tone was such that we were  
beside ourselves with 
every word while we sipped burning tea.

It was so long ago it hurts;
do you recall?
How many cups of tea did we drink that night?
Was it weak tea? 

Finalizing another monologue, the one resolutely jabbed  
the floor with a dull, heated poker
and we almost remembered we were forgetting something….

something.. 

Now that I think of it,  
I am fairly sure that we gazed like 
stock still shadows into the swirling flames.   

Why did we sit upon  
those semi-explanatory words?  
Who was the one?
What made the one’s words wise
In our interrogative red eyes?

I have so many questions.

Here we are, stoking the  
embers of remembrance, of nostalgic fires, sensing   
a memory of this and that of bygone days when 
in the light of a fire we were momentarily forgetting something….

something.

I know the wisdom that night was   
a mortal wisdom staring us in our faces.

The one was indeed a wordy one,
with mixtures of madness  
on the tip of the tongue, 
stoking generalities into judgments. 

And brushing these embers into wild sparks 
the indescribable one adopted them into himself, 
continually brushing in them in the dark
where we were losing something,
where we were forgetting something….

something….

in the dark.

Do you remember that night, 
my friend? 
Did we drink weak tea?




Latest posts by Ben Plunkett (see all)

Ben Plunkett

Greetings from the booming metropolis that is Pleasant View, Tennessee. I am a man of constant spiritual highs and spiritual lows. I pray that I serve God at my highest even when I am lowest.

6 thoughts on “Did We Drink Weak Tea?

  • July 16, 2019 at 5:36 pm
    Permalink

    Power and pathos, Ben! I’ll probably need to read it 10 times go begin to grasp if there’s an underlying meaning, but it sure sounds good. Poetry moves us!

    Reply
  • July 16, 2019 at 8:22 pm
    Permalink

    Thanks, guys.

    Mr. Lytle, there is definitely an underlying meaning to everything I’ve said here.

    Reply
  • June 9, 2022 at 3:06 pm
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    I am interested in this poem at the moment because I am trying to come up with a broad definitional construct for the term “weak tea.” Could you share with me what this phrase means metaphorically. I’m nearing the end of my research and am on a tight deadline, so if could contact me before the end of today, that would be helpful.

    Reply
    • June 9, 2022 at 3:16 pm
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      I wish we could help. The writer who wrote that poem, Benjamin Plunkett, passed away a few years ago. He would be the only one who could answer that question definitively.

      Reply
      • June 9, 2022 at 3:55 pm
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        Thanks, Phill
        I discovered that a few seconds after I pressed “Post.”
        Interestingly, perhaps, in chapter 3 of Lewis Carroll’s Through the looking Glass, the Gnat twlls Alice of a creature called a Bread-and-Butterfly that lives on “Weak tea with cream in it.”

        Vic

        Reply

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