Toward the End
And then there’s a moment of realization
where he knows he’s made a mistake.
Maybe it happens as he takes a drag
from the day’s first cigarette,
or while he gulps the mid-day coffee—
new habits to shed an old life.
You want to tell him you know
he knows, but don’t. Instead,
you stand there in the astonishing quiet,
in the wake of stale smoke
watching him throw away
a large Styrofoam cup full of butts.