the scent of memory cuts the deepest

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: January 14, 2019

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Submitted: January 14, 2019

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baby's hair like silk filament
after a bath in my arms
wood cut and stacked a year ago
burning in the stove like a bonfire
an old book yellowing
rarely taken from the shelf
the soft perfumed neck
my high school sweetheart wore
hand sanitizer in the antiseptic NICU
after a daughter was born too soon
dried deer-blood fingers
after field dressing in deep snow
the end of a gas station cigarette
while traveling the starry late night interstate
the ammonia and dish soap bucket
my grandmother used to wash windows
a willowing grey hanging haze
of spent firecrackers
diesel engines idling against time
on a crisp autumn jobsite morning
a mouse long forgotten
in the trap
jellyfish melting on Mazatlan's yellow sand
under a Mexican seafoam sungod
toilet vomit
after too many drinks
tattoo parlor
green soap
a hog farm between
two dairy farms along the gravel
a fresh slice of pizza folded on a paper plate
from a fat faced Manhattan corner deli
an overzealous swimming pool
that burns July eyes
smooth Mississippi catfish skin
sliming the drab olive hull of the flat bottom
eucalyptus trees outstretched and reaching
after a June Los Angeles rain
used vinyl
spinning beneath the silver needle
sour red wine kneeling
in a glass thimble communion prayer
a crowd of flowers silently weeping
inside a funeral home
mom's jar of Russian Tea mix stirred
from our log cabin Alaskan homestead
all of these things
appear and disappear
and then appear again


© Copyright 2019 peter engen. All rights reserved.

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