Just woken up I already feel the fragrant flavor;

I stir and stir in the dark tumbler my day so trite.

It is not a bit of sugar that makes my lips luscious,

But your words so charming and smile so bright.


Beside the sharp odor, I open wide my eyes,

Sense time seethe thru the boiling of the kettle.

I pour my soul into the coffee-pot and hear

Life drip each drop down into the fine fettle.


I am aware your affection is so passionate;

In times of solitude I can readily find your care.

Life§s cup does not by itself savor sweet smell;

It is delicious owing to your hands that prepare.


Let us return contention to the narrow streets;

We keep for our lives just a private corner so fair.




Each morning begins with that familiar taste,

And that whole day thus starts with your love.

I drink sip by sip the mundane vicissitudes:

Coffee -- and you -- in my heart, my dear dove.  



            Vietnamese poem by NHƯ HOA

            English translation by THANH-THANH