Various coffee-themed poems I have written, with more to come.

writing poems about coffee

Writing poems is one of my numerous hobbies. I make no claim to quality, but I enjoy writing them.

As you’ll see, coffee is a central part of each of the following poems. Some are light-hearted, others less so. All are written by me.



Home for the weekend
I unboxed a new French press
and opened a bag of fresh-ground
Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee,
showing off new ways to
my old parents, to the delight 
of my mother and the back of
my father, who stood at the stove,
heating milk for his Nescafé instant.

As I fussed over the kettle,
explaining the importance
of water temperature, a 
kinder part of myself paused,
loving the smell of my father's 
instant coffee, remembering the 
sips he allowed me as a child
when my mother wasn't looking.

My Yirgacheffe forgotten, I 
smiled and inhaled the memories
of a childhood at the stove.

© nick Usborne


So we switched the beans from
his fancy single origin coffee
with some cheapo beans from
the corner store. Our beans 
in his bag, his fancy beans in 

And sniggered into our cereal 
when he came down and oohed 
and aarghed over the aroma and
taste profile of his first cup.

Can we have a taste? We asked

No way, he said. Use your own 
crap beans and leave mine alone.

So we did, and brewed our pot
in our usual, casual way.

And were surprised to find that
his fancy beans really were a 
whole lot better.

© nick Usborne


I felt suddenly awkward,
with my cappuccino and carrot
cake, catching sight of the 
homeless lady, tight and angry 
in her corner with a mug of 
black coffee.

And she looked right back at me,
at my ease and my easy time. 

She measured her own time by the
sip, under the eyes of the waitress,
until the last cold drop, and cold
stare, before heading back 
into the snow.

As the door closed behind her,
the waitress caught my eyes,
as if in shared relief.

But all I felt was shame.

© nick Usborne


After stopping for cafe au lait
at Chez Gerard in Chapelle-sure-Loire,
our bikes leaned against the
fresh-cleaned window, we caught the 
coffee bug and bought a half kilo in 
a brown paper bag.

Later, in our tent in the woods, by a 
stream, we puzzled over how to make 
our brew.

Damn, he said, we should have 
bought some filters and a cone or 

But we were 18 and determined, 
and not yet schooled in the finer 
points of hygiene.

So we boiled water from the stream
and filtered the coffee through
the cleanest sock we could find.
Mine, I think, as he is still famous 
for the pong of his feet

As for the coffee, I know we drank it,
but I can't honestly remember 
whether it was good or bad.

Not that it matters, as I still hold the 
memory of that sodden, coffee-filled
sock, and how we laughed ourselves 
silly as we rinsed it in the stream.

© nick Usborne


three sips ahead
of sunrise and I 
spill it all,

see my coffee
splash wide across
the horizon,

hear the hiss
of daybreak 

and the brief sigh 
of another lost day.

© nick usborne

About the author: Nick Usborne, aka Coffee Detective, is a writer and long-time coffee enthusiast. Read more…

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