Waiting for Lauren Bacall

On a bench outside
the Dakota in July of 1988,
I wait for Lauren Bacall

I sit quietly holding
a Starbucks and think
about far away destinations
like Key Largo or other such
places written on the wind

I occupy myself, Central Park
behind me over my left shoulder
the green space of Strawberry Fields

There is a man nearby
in a blue dress shirt;
I wonder if he is also waiting
for Lauren Bacall

I do not know what I would say
to her if she were to appear;
hello sounds so benign; yet,
I love you seems a bit forward

How does one speak intimately
to a person these days when intimacy
is limited to black-and-white cinema?
Lauren is alluring, faint, and sexy,
kissing other men, daring them to whistle
if she is needed

I am soon at a loss: a transit bus has stopped
between her Dakota and my bench,
there are dead leaves blowing past my feet,
the man in the blue shirt has been joined
by another man; I can see their mouths
moving but their words are lost
in the drone of automobiles,
blue city trucks, and that damn bus

I fear I may have missed Lauren,
as much as I once feared I missed
the opening credits to her last movie;
hundreds of pigeons surround me
like lost friends; all of them preparing
to depart at exactly the same time.


Tim J Brennan’s poems are published widely in nice places like The Lake (U.K.), Talking Stick, LoBurn, KAXE public radio, Sleet, and Green Blade.  Brennan’s one act plays have been performed across the country on nice stages in NYC, Bethesda, Chicago & Bloomington IL, Colorado Springs, Milwaukee, White Bear Lake & Rochester MN, and Gulf Shores AL.  Brennan taught Secondary English for over 30 years.  He is retired and loving it.

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