Memory I (Neroli)

Just a wisp: a scent of neroli, garden soil, and confusion,

that blows by you on your bike rides through town:

strange, familiar–like a beer you tried once in some city (

fuck, which city?) you can’t remember what it’s called

or why it matters. But you know that it does.

A bit of dust in your eye, irritating you long after

you’ve wiped it out, you tear up, remembering

the unremarkable and unforgettable thing

that’s on the tip of your brain, on the highest shelf,

behind the broken kettle and forty-year-old National Geographics.

But your mind is shoots, and ladders,

all fun and games till it really matters,

there’s an enamel pot, a dusty set of salad bowls,

and a picture-cookbook your mother liked (you should call her),

endless distractions, endless pratfalls, endless forgetting.

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