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The rage, the grace, and the ferocity in between,
This relationship promised, to be nothing but pristine,
Calling out to me desperately, yearning to meet,
Now this is a bond, to which I could always retreat.

There it goes navigating, through the undergrowth,
Creating dense and lush bonds, tied by an eternal oath,
A stream giving life, to everything in its path,
This is a land that lives, beyond the clusters’ aftermath.

The stream takes us, to the hinterlands of civilization,
Technology absent, in the face of more than one distraction,
The blood red soil, furnishing the steady stilt houses,
This is where humanity comes to life, in many disguises.

Ambition stronger, than a finely brewed espresso,
A life seeped in tradition, transcends the status-quo,
Manifesting in the coffee, that shoulders the community,
The elements convene here daily, with sincere loyalty.
This piece is a dedication to wonders of nature and communities, often indigenous to those lands, that are so well integrated within the comforting confines of mother nature. Although the inspiration for this comes from many sources, it particularly refers to many elements of Laos – a country in Southeast Asia.
The gold that flows, through our elaborate veins,
The crop that is known, by many names,
The gift that alleviates, our daytime pains,
The commodity that plays, one too many games.

Our world is nothing, but a bottomless mine,
Simply waiting, for the wrath and plunder of humankind,  
Oh labourers please, wait your spot in line,
For it was not you that made, this incredible find.

You’re a fool to think, the system needs a redesign,
For your fate and this chain, are forever intertwined.
Stay in your corner, as they wine and dine,
For it is you not them, contained by this chain’s bind.  

Posing as a gift, that elevates their daily grind,
The brown gold is no longer, part of your bloodline,
It was their chains after all, that made this incredible find,
For it now flows away, from the Plateau’s skyline.
You continue to hope, for these chains to be redefined,
But to imagine you even exist to them, is asinine,
Yet you believe a consumer movement, would be so inclined,
For you forget that chains were made, to always confine.
This is a poem dedicated to the hard working smallholder coffee farmers around the world. This poem is intended to speak to their struggle, the inequalities of coffee value/supply chains the world over, and the unfortunate reality that these farmers face. This poem can certainly apply to many smallholder farmers and other labourers (landless or not) who suffer similar fates. Note that coffee in some circles is referred to as brown gold because of its economic value.

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