Leonard Lang

The Last of Anything

The last day of anything–
vacation, winter, marriage,
life on this street–
is much the same
as the day before,
the cat sleeping, the wind still blowing
with no regard for ceremony,
the cobblestones unrepaired, and tents
still mum in their nylon sacks,
perhaps words coming a bit more slowly,
pauses held longer,
someone trying to get it right
after so many lost opportunities
like this one now
almost in hand.


Life Savings

My parents warned me
to save for the future,
as if there is only one,
which they wound up calling Florida
until that wasn’t enough.
Long ago they gave me
a future,
which sometimes sounded like voices
jarring the night
and other times
like the clean click of quarters,
the slipping of coins
through the slots,
rattling, clinking together
on the bottom of a child’s bank
with images of dogs grinning
and cats with raised fur
eyeing me under the sun, all the animals
seeing me save my life
savings in a container
that vanished ages ago,
with all those coins still locked blindly within,
all that hopeful money
that I had remembered to save.


About Last Night

A woman who has been here
all along
sits beside me
at a dance and begins
a long conversation
about her life in Romania
or maybe Sri Lanka,
having left the States
before the last troubles
to disappear, the two
still in the future. Her legs
are indeed
very long and thin,
her eyes too deep
to fathom
in such shallow light,
the music playing
an old tune
so true
of the last century.
She takes my hand
and I think to ask:
Don’t I know you?
but she insists
I remind her only of Poland
or was it
Tierra del Fuego
where our names were
probably almost
as they are now,
when the band was playing
on and on
as if that time
under the half moon
was, like this time,
the one
that mattered.


Leonard Lang is co-founder of BoomerLitMag and a frequently published poet whose work has been selected for a best-of-year national anthology.