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Caffeine
(04 October 1943 / Germany)

Caffeine

The German chemist, name was Runge, did discover
what is today the recreation drug of note.
He had been burdened by a rather frigid lover
and any chances of pizzazz were quite remote.

Until the day that he unveiled this alkaloid,
he slipped the newly ground up powder in her drink,
and, like a miracle, without the help of Freud,
inside an hour she had hovered near the brink.

Today counts millions that enjoy it, are addicted,
its subtle forces reminiscent of hypnosis,
it grabs the mind's own keepers, they become afflicted
and light the fires through a power like osmosis.

Adenosine, a sleeping aid for humans
is blocked thus, cleverly by this great chemical.
All faces, male, will then appear to be Paul Newman's,
erotic switches madly triggered, quickly. Well,

you get the gist of course, this substance turns you on,
it lifts your spirits, boosts alertness, sharpens thinking.
It brings a buzz into your system like a ton
of sweet endorphins that will lead you, without blinking

into the land of auditory high perceivers
and visual clarity you have not known before,
it gives you limitless endurance for those fevers
of ultramarathons, as you then ask for more.

We have Red Bull today, it is a tasty blend
of fancy sugar, bits of protein, caffeine,
six hundred milligrams will very likely send
you into territory where you've never been.

Which is equivalent to three strong cups of brew,
or of The Bull it would require eight cold cans.
Medieval chemists who had lazy wives, they knew
that ergogenic aids would make a trillion fans.

They thus revealed the secret to the common masses,
soon all the households drank their Java at sunrise.
Some used their cups or barley straws or whiskyglasses,
but they all felt truly enlightened and so wise

that the habit grabbed the folks of many nations,
it also helped to bring about a great invention,
since all the people liked the uplifting sensation
also the way it brought all things to their attention.

It murders sleep though and the nights were very dark,
a cup of coffee got the youthful juices flowing,
but even hyperactive vision missed its mark,
electric lighting would eliminate the glowing

and flicker-flacker tallow candles would make room
for the new light bulb and its rather pushy mother,
of course our friend again, today we can assume
that much of progress, mankind's growth did have no other

but that sweet beverage of roasted beans behind it.
And, to this day you ask the Nobel Prize Committee
and you will find that they use coffee and they grind it,
to help them think and make decisions, and be witty

about who gets to win the next Prize of Nobél,
it's always coffeedrinkers, never tea and toast
who find the secrets of the universe and tell
the real story of the very innermost

and so elusive, well ambiguous connections.
Though this is changing with the advent of that drink,
which has already swept through population sections
of global villages and countries on the brink.

And now I'll leave you with a riddle you can ponder,
a brandnew custom has befallen caffeine.
You and I may just sit back and gently wonder
how plenty Vodka will affect that coffee bean.

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Comments (1)

Excellent poem, Herbert. Very well stated! I am a great believer in that wonderful roasted bean... Warmest regards, CJ