Tom Waits For No One
Indelicate moonlight at end of summer in the discolored trees.
I am, I am afraid, a poster child for clarity.
We should, I think, approach the end of a friendship like death.
Shuffling imperceptibly at the road, plastic replica of wineglass in hand,
a drop or two at the bottom,
no one to fill it.
I remember in this sunset, all the red leaves,
this began days before spring,
a streak of blood in a mostly gray sky,
the smallest of wounds.
Here, right here, is a space to make notes.
Leonard Gontarek coordinates Peace/Works, Poetry In Common, Philly Poetry Day, hosts The Green Line Reading & Interview Series, is Poetry Consultant for Whitman at 200: Art and Democracy, and contributing editor for The American Poetry Review. He is the author of six books of poems, most recently Take Your Hand Out of My Pocket, Shiva. His poems have appeared in Field, Poet Lore, Verse Daily, Fence, Poetry Northwest, and The Best American Poetry. He has twice received poetry fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on The Arts. He conducts poetry workshops in venues including, The Kelly Writers House, Free Library of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership, and weekly workshops from his home in West Philadelphia.
2 thoughts on “Tom Waits For No One by Leonard Gontarek ”
Amazing; what I like most, and there is so much to like in this poem, is how the tongue-in-cheek, play-on-words title sets up an expectation that is echoed subtly in the body of the poem, “plastic replica wineglass in hand”, while the poem’s impact goes both beyond and says something profoundly different in its fundamental tone. Great poem.
Thank you Leonard for sharing your poem. A remembrance of Tom Waits always brings a smile.