The Copper Coffee Pot

I wouldn’t be surprised if you just look at the title
and think;  Coffee Pot!  What is there to say about such a
seemingly everyday object?
And I would understand you, but please stay with me a little
longer through this post.

In my About page I hint that there will be stories coming
that show vignettes of my life both in England and Sweden.

O.K. , I can hear your frustrated sigh, so why a Coffee Pot?

This Copper Coffee Pot is very old, goes back to my
Grandfather’s days. It was an important part of the men’s life
and I am now the caretaker, until such time that it passes to the
next generation. It has pride of place and I often tell the stories
that were told to me, hence giving my children a feeling of their
ancestors.

The poem below came to me as I was polishing it one day
and all was abandoned for the notepad and pen.

003

Copper Coffee Pot

An inanimate object it might seem,
Yet, is it really so?
Emotions stirred by the Pot,
The Copper Coffee Pot,
say no.
Polishing this morning,
Its surface filled;
With lustre and life lived.

It had sailed the Sea, in storms,
in hurricanes,
Also in still, smiling swells.
For seven men it brewed every day,
Gave warmth and cheer,
clattered its spout lid to say;
Coffee ready, take a break.

Men with strength of body and heart,
with purpose and skill;
In tune with the elements each day,
feeling the mood of the Sea.
Respecting and honouring,
Its power, its gifts.

Their work was heavy,
cold, among waves,
Full trawls spread smiles.
No-one minding the tearing of
sinews, muscles and backs.
In this age old task.

These men were my ancestors,
part of who I am, and I of them.
Their lives, their hands had touched me,
Given me strength.

The Copper Pot in my hands
A cherished and vital part
of their days.
Here they met, found warmth,
succour and laughs.

An empowering friend.

© miriam ivarson

Vinga lighthouse

All photographs © miriam ivarson

29 thoughts on “The Copper Coffee Pot

  1. Its so true about inanimate objects that have been passed through generations. When you hold them in your hands you can sense the presence of those who have held and used it in the past. We are the product of the generations that have gone before us, and objects such as a copper coffe pot are links back to them. I have some things that were given to me by my grandfather when I was a child (now a long time ago) together with the stories he told me about their history, and every time I look at them I think of him. Very precious indeed.

    As I once heard said, if you don’t know where you came from, how do you know where you are going…..

    Mike

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for your wise comment Mike, it rings so kind and warm.
      It is so lovely how you describe your inherited treasures.
      Indeed we are living in the now but without our roots it is harder to reach
      upwards and forwards.
      Miriam

      Like

  2. Miriam, this is beautiful and reminds me of Blake, “to see the world in a grain of sand”. For how many objects do we cast aside that behold such memories and life in them still. And what better object to behold this magic than a copper coffee pot to show us the multitudes of people who drank from its brew so they could master another day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you JC, I am so glad you found the poem beautiful and I hope the seajourney didn’t make you seasick.:)
      As to Blake’s comment I would then see the world through stones of granite, they do have strong vibrations.
      The coffee was strong and gave a good kick and there were many laughs around the table.
      miriam

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s an overused phrase, but “Wooden Ships and Iron Men” is really appropriate here. The generations that used that coffee-pot really were setting off in wooden ships. Facilities were limited, navigation aids almost unknown, relying on Astro, limited communications in the event of a problem, and no rescue services available anyway. Even when things were going well, the trawls were generally hauled by hand, the living accommodation became wet for days on end, and the food was repetitive. Add to all this, for the generation who worked during the war, they were sailing in seas littered with mines, many of which cost the lives of crews.
    To have that pot in your possession, an object that links you to these Iron Men, your ancestors, must feel a real privilege. Care for it, and pass it down to the next generation.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Peter for your in depth comment. Their muscular strength was by needs built from young age and it wasn’t unknown that the ship was hauled through the ice in winter to reach open water. The wonder I saw later was the wisdom long nights at sea brought them. We would call it meditation these days. To them it was just being.

      They still had wooden ships in my father’s days and I have myself slept in one of these – to me – cosy bunks. The women folk kept it all cosy and clean.:)
      The steel ships today have better accommodation and fascilities than many homes – a new era.
      I will and do care for that Pot.🌈🦋

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you Andrea, you are right too. I often think how much care they took, even in tougher living , to have pleasing objects around. If you look towards the base you will see ‘ a lip’ which was there so you could sink the pot down
    lest it flew away in the waves.
    Yes, I am lucky to be the caretaker. 😊
    Miriam

    Like

  5. Wow! Miriam, the strength and spirit of your ancestors resonate powerfully through the force of your poem which captures their hard physical work in terrible (and good) conditions with their humour and joy in life shining strong. 😀 ❤️ The sibilance in ‘It had sailed the Sea, in storms,/in hurricanes,/Also in still, smiling swells.’ mimics the very movement of the vast water and brings us on along on aboard the very fishing boat! I love how this poem came to be from the simple act of polishing this ‘sacred’ copper pot one morning – a lesson to us all that inspiration can strike at any time! It is a precious heirloom to be treasured from one generation to the next. Just one question…how did anyone pour coffee from it in stormy seas?! 😀😃

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you so much Annika for your so very positive and strong answer.
    Glad you spotted the humour and joy these guys shared too….and love.
    I am chuffed that you noticed the sibilance in the poem. 🤗

    You are right, we can all find inspiration every day in small things or bigger events. We just need to open up and listen.

    Poor the coffee, hmmm…..they were just standing straight , riding the waves.
    🌊. Practice make perfect the saying goes.
    Miriam💕

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I understood what you meant in the opening of the post, because I have some old pots like this (and an old old scale) that I savor and display in a shelf. But your poem – your poem expressed so much more about the beauty of feeling the life of an object. About appreciating who touched and used and lived with that object in days past. Absolutely beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Pam for your deep and heartfelt response.
      There are stories pouring forth as we hold special objects in our hands.
      I am glad you can feel the same, it took me a long time to polish that pot
      before it had told me all. 🙂
      It could have been a very long poem…..😊
      miriam

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I love all things old (in fact, I have this entire post – in – progress on it!). Your lovely poem echoed not only my own feelings but nostalgia lined with warmth! Reminds me of “Ode on a Grecian Urn” by John Keats which is dear to my heart.
    Thank you for sharing piece of your heritage with us.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I don’t think you’re odd at all for cherishing your grandfather’s coffee pot, the history it embodies and stories it tells. I love old things and believe they carry the memories of those who used them. Lovely post, Miriam. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  10. No, not odd…that is true. Sensitive to the vibes and auras that surround us and things that has been handled through the eras. I do believe they carry memories as it often has proved to be so.
    Just like some houses you walk into, you can feel so warm and welcome or be chilled to the bone.
    Miriam

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are probably right Kathy 😉 , or could it be that the memories are attached and come alive in ones hands.? One thing is sure though, I loved and love them.
      miriam

      Like

  11. So beautiful Miriam and you were right, it wasn’t an ordinary pot at all but rather a vessel containing history and ancestry. How wonderful that you’ve captured all that in your poem. I truly loved this. 💜☕️

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Thank you Janice, your comment makes me happy I took courage
    to post this.
    All of you here also make me feel I might have made my father proud with
    this poem. 💕
    miriam

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s