My mother taught me to drink it
by the gallon,
a flood of dirty brown the best accompaniment to
tiredness boredom grief conversation
the passage of time.
In case of shock, add sugar.
While some warm the pot and measure the leaves,
bags bought by the hundred in a box
of tannin and dust, each morning repeating
that first, best moment
when the water boils,
and what I have before me is enough.