[the poetry billboard] - 'The Tavern' by Jan Oscar Hansen
The Tavern

Jan Oscar Hansen

In Rio de Janeiro I walked into a tavern with oak barrels and unpolished
wooden floor where they served Brazilian red wine
that came from the upland, a valley were they spoke German.
The place was full and I shared a table with a gent called Joao
he spoke rapidly for a long time till realising that his words met
little response my Portuguese is rudimentary, fearing he long
silences like an overture to death he went and sat somewhere
else. In a tavern in Spain I once saw a college professor from
Michigan writing observations in a notebook and I was deeply impressed till
I saw him self righteously drinking Seven Up and didn't see the lady who
kills matadors making a great entrance.
Here in this Rio tavern everyone endlessly spoke no one read
or looked into space, but the wine was excellent. Outside a dog barked it
too feared the moonlit silence.