World Poetry Day and Julius Meinl Coffee

by Mira

Julius Meinl celebrated World Poetry Day for the second time in Romania by inviting its guests to pay for their coffee with a poem. Article includes photos from a café.

As I found out a couple of days ago, March 21, 2014 was World Poetry Day. I learned about this from a Julius Meinl commercial on the Yahoo signup page. There was a map of Bucharest with pins indicating locations of Julius Meinl cafés in Bucharest, and the message that on World Poetry Day, Julius Meinl offers people a cup of coffee in exchange for a poem. I quickly identified a café I could easily get to, and before I headed out the door to meet a friend for an exhibition of Romanian comic strips I quickly pulled an Emily Dickinson poem off the Internet.

My friend wrote her own poem, a poem for kids based on a story she’s working on. We were provided with napkins for the purpose. And yes, the coffee was delicious, as one would expect from Julius Meinl. The café was also very pleasant: airy and with understated character – well, except one window that had been hit by a flying stone.

But First, the Comic Strips Exhibition

I’m a little off-topic here, but some artists and writers do actually write poetry in those speech bubbles – or if not poetry, something close to it. Then there’s the relationship between image and word(s), which has also been explored by poetry.

I've never read comic books, either as a kid or adult, but lately I’ve come to look forward to a time when I could learn more about them. To this purpose, I have ordered a while ago some books about the history of comic books. (Never got to read them yet though.)

The Art of Comic Strips exhibition, curated by Alexandru Ciubotariu, is hosted by the National Library of Romania in downtown Bucharest. It features comic strips, drawings, and preparatory sketches by a good number of Romanian artists (about seventy) active before and after 1989. I’m showing a few examples below.

The exhibition, open since September 12, 2013, lasts until May 31, 2014.  

The Art of Comic Strips, National Library of Romania

Some of the works exhibited
The Art of Comic Strips at the National Library
The Art of Comic Strips at the National Library
© Mira at Wizzley
Serban Andreescu, Childhood Memories by Ion Creanga, 2013
Serban Andreescu, Childhood Memories by Ion Creanga, 2013
© Mira at Wizzley
Lavinia Trifan, Tartarin of Tarascon, 2012
Lavinia Trifan, Tartarin of Tarascon, 2012
© Mira at Wizzley
Remus Brezeanu, Bram and Ben, 2013
Remus Brezeanu, Bram and Ben, 2013
© Mira at Wizzley
Remus Brezeanu, Bram and Ben, 2013
Remus Brezeanu, Bram and Ben, 2013
© Mira at Wizzley
Adrian Andronic, The Ice Ship / The Island Mystery, 2011
Adrian Andronic, The Ice Ship / The Island Mystery, 2011
© Mira at Wizzley
Burschi Gruder, The Adventures of Costel, 1989
Burschi Gruder, The Adventures of Costel, 1989
© Mira at Wizzley
Burschi Gruder, The Adventures of Costel, 1989
Burschi Gruder, The Adventures of Costel, 1989
© Mira at Wizzley
Exhibiting Artists
Exhibiting Artists
 

Then, the Coffee

The café was close to the exhibition space, and so after a short walk through powerful spring sunlight we found ourselves in a cool interior, sparsely populated. It felt great. We sat down at a table which had special-made napkins for the day, inviting you to lay down your poetry there. Yours, or someone else’s. As I said, I chose an Emily Dickinson poem, which I had printed out for the purpose.

My friend ordered a simple espresso, and I ordered a cappuccino. Then we sat down to write our poems. And then we talked.

It was a fine day :-)

I take everything with a bit of coffee T-shirt

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Enjoying Great Coffee and Conversation

World Poetry Day at a Julius Meinl café
World Poetry Day at a Julius Meinl café
© Mira at Wizzley
Julius Meinl café in downtown Bucharest
Julius Meinl café in downtown Bucharest
© Mira at Wizzley
Julius Meinl cappuccino
Julius Meinl cappuccino
© Mira at Wizzley

Enjoy Your Cups of Joe

. . . wherever you are!

Whoever is tired of coffee is tired of life
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Updated: 09/27/2014, Mira
 
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Mira on 11/25/2014

Coffee may even hurry the muse :) Thank you for stopping by, Shraddha!

WriterArtist on 11/25/2014

I can see the obvious - the relationship of coffee and the poetry. I like them both, there is nothing better than reading poetry with a cup of hot coffee on a cold winter evening.

Mira on 09/08/2014

Yes, you have a point there. Next time I'll try to be even more in the moment and think of a cappuccino- and friendship-inspired poem. Or something :-)

RuthCox on 09/08/2014

Oh, I do like the way the coffee shop celebrated World Poetry Day! I would have been like your friend and would have written my own poem for my cappuccino.

Mira on 04/11/2014

:-) Apparently the Julius Meinl Poetry Day covered 150 locations across the country. Quite exciting! But no one wrote about the outcome of this initiative. They did publicize it, though, and said they aimed at 15,000 poems. I suspect that was a total figure for several countries. I do wonder how many people thought of coffee and poetry in Romania on March 21 :). Apparently the slogan was "Poetry Can Make the World a Better Place." Indeed :)

Mira on 04/11/2014

That's good to hear (that you're working on republishing it, or at least plan to do it in the near future). Nope, my poems aren't available either, at least not the recent ones which I'm happy with these days. I'm submitting them here and there though, and am still hoping that one day soon . . . :)

JoHarrington on 04/10/2014

I do love poetry, but missed the day. I'll hold my own belated Poetry Day instead!

DerdriuMarriner on 04/08/2014

Mira, My poetry is currently unavailable. Republishing is on my huge to-do list.
Is your poetry available?

Mira on 04/07/2014

:) Thank you, Violette, for stopping by!

VioletteRose on 04/07/2014

I didn't know about world poetry day, glad you had a great time :)


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