Issue 11: Winter 2017




The Winter 2017 issue of Mangrove Journal is an online-only edition. Print books of select Spring issues are available on the University of Miami Coral Gables campus for a suggested donation of $5-$10 to the Creative Writing Program. Please contact for more information.


Coffee Grounds

Not a sandwich made with love and care, or sweet cherry pie,
I give you coffee grounds.
They are soaked and old,
the remnants of yesterday’s brew.
They are the little grits of displeasure
sitting at the bottom of your half-empty cup.

They’ve been used before
and could be used again,
but if you strain what’s been strained
such juice will not be so strong.
The first time the water runs through
elicits the most flavor. The second time
only brews bad water. Bad water
will give you bad blood.

An aroma of what was once rich, intoxicating, pure,
is now that of stale dirt,
drowning in bitter.
Brown watered-down tar,
I wish you’d drink it.
Gargle mud. You should feel it
on the roof of your mouth,
like sand escaped from sandpaper,
scraping down the back of your snaking throat.

Swallow, shudder. Feel your tongue recoil in your mouth.

Let the coffee grounds find their places
between your capped, white teeth,
little black mites tucked in for the night.
Stuck like soil. Perfect, for a man who speaks filth
when he claims to speak love.

This morning, I hear the kettle whistling at me from the kitchen.
My moonbeam legs stretch over the side of the bed,
enjoying the bodiless space that now smells of lemon, of clean,
not your spoiled cigarettes or your used,
soggy, worthless coffee grounds.
These days, I make tea. 

Hunter Wright

Hunter Wright is a student at the University of Miami.