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Lunch On The Texas Outskirts

nearly every single word is entirely true

Somewhere in the barren wasteland hill country between
Lubbock and Denton Texas lies
the J – M Caprock Cafe.
The rusted road sign reads only, “CAFE”
in large red capital letters.

It seems hard to describe the ambience of this place entirely,
but this here snapshot should suffice,
until you find yourself hungry somewhere in the barren
wasteland hill country between Lubbock and Denton Texas.

By the front door sits a large man with a silver handlebar mustache
holding a yellow fly swatter. Seems he’s been there for years, decades?
His cohort across the table fades in and out of focus each time
the grimy glass door swings open,
sucking the cool air out into an abyss of hot.

The cute waitress is certainly the only single female in town.
Breasts and burgers draw cowboys from far and wide –
to say nothing of her Native American ponytail bouncing
to the rhythm of overconfident footsteps. And almost everyone is
wearing a cowboy hat, ‘cept for the lone UPS man munching
cherry cobbler in the back corner – his hat is just brown,
standard company issue.

Menus be damned, who doesn’t eat from the buffet
in a place like this?
There’s fried steak dry and fried steak soaked in gravy.
In line the man bulging behind me says,
“That nasty, healthy salad stuff will kill you.”
Eric asks, “Is this a pork chop?” and the bulge replies,
“Don’t matter much, just put gravy on it!”

Texas. The rearview mirror thermometer reads
110 degrees as my brown Suburban
kicks up a welcomed billow of dust – a moment of cool
cloud cover for the charred dirt parking lot.

Handlebar mustache smacks another fly carcass
against the grimy glass door.
The bulge returns for a third helping.
Ponytail peeps out between the yellow mini-blinds and
watches as we drive off East, the dust clears and Mr. UPS needs to pay,
lots of packages left for Caprock.

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7 thoughts on “Lunch On The Texas Outskirts

  1. Sonny says:

    Nice. Really nice. And thanks– now I’ve no reason to stop in myself. You just took me there and showed me around. 😉

    • Thanks for the comments guys and gals. The entire lunch was pretty surreal – and I even lived in TX for 6 years. My favorite character was the waitress. She was quirky and able to handle a room full of hungry cowboys, but I has to think that she must want out. Some part of her can’t be satisfied there.

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