Dear Leonard,

We met somewhere between your songs of love and hate. You showed me music in a way I hadn’t experienced before.  Your words were brutal, but beautiful. They were reverent, yet sensuous. You were a man of the world, a roving poet with an exposed heart. You sang about a blue raincoat and I heard true music for the first time. I fell a thousand kisses deep under your spell. Yet you were in my room, in my car, by my side while I wrote – an intangible extension which swirled around me like smoke.


I had the privilege to see you in 2013. You were beautiful in your fragility, humble and well-dressed. Your gravelly voice was honeyed by age and cigarettes. You were in the final act of life, while I was trying to raise the curtain.

I dreaded your passing, like the inevitable death of a benevolent grandfather or a dear teacher. But alas, prophets are mortal men and last November you entered a pine coffin and returned to the earth. I never spoke to you, never held you, but I shed tears for you. I cried in my room, in my car, cried while I wrote. You were a part of me. You still are a part of me. Words never dull, music never fades.


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Maggie Jankuloska is the founder of Marauder Literary Journal. She is a Melbourne-based writer and her work has been featured in: The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, Feminartsy, Award Winning Australian Writing, n-SCRIBE and more. Find her on Twitter – @maggiejank       


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