Poetry 2015 / Volume 46

Memorable Cigarettes — John Repp

The Lark I lit to show a girl
I wasn’t the boy she’d known,
but the tanned, bearded, work-worn
man she wanted to light her Larks forever.
__________
The Camels & Lucky Strikes & Chesterfields & Old Golds
everyone in black-&-white movies leans back with half-shut
eyes to draw on, especially Gregory Peck in Pork Chop Hill
& Lauren Bacall in anything.
__________
The commissary Winstons my friend C.J. bought
after his breakdown at a set of coordinates
known only to Army Intelligence.
__________
Any Dunhill. Any Player. Any Picayune.
Every single Export A ever lit.
__________
The Salem my father lit
each time he slid behind the wheel.
__________
Every Gaulois Frank O’Hara
brandished at the Cedar.
__________
The Doral my girlfriend ground into the ashtray
on my chest the night we found I wouldn’t fly
to Da Nang after all.
__________
The last one: a Winston Light tapped from a fresh pack,
devoured down to the filter & snuffed out
at the stroke of midnight, March 2, 1982.
__________
One June evening, friends gather on a screened-in porch.
After chasing the last morsel of blue-claw crab with dregs
of the decade’s driest Pinot Grigio, we each unknot
a goatskin pouch of Virginia tobacco & roll with one hand
the best cigarette of our lives.

As talk dwindles to companionable silence,
we breathe blue-white smoke in a world
free of consequence.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s