Alley Air Appetiser

The chefs are outside again, wrapped in their whites,
Bottomed in baggy chessboard trousers,
Sharing smokes and dirty jokes.
Their black shoes, powdered in flour and ash,
Pass an aluminium can back and forth,
Rattling with the ring pull.
After a full chuckle, they claim one last breath
Of alley air appetiser, douse their cigarettes in
The shallow puddles
Before filing back inside, to cook
For dentists and doctors and the almighty food critic,
Armed with a notepad and ballpoint pen.
“Here we go again,” one chants,
Through the closing door of a kitchen Heaven.

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