How the Nose Remembers

In response to We Write Poems’ Prompt #73 concerning the sense of smell. I particularly liked this prompt because I’ve always believed that certain scents can act as time machines…

How the Nose Remembers

The kindergarten bathroom
or what my memory rehearses of it
was white, two-stalled.
A wide-hipped woman we called
Grandma Eleanor sat me, schooled me
in wiping, pulling up the bottoms
of my matching outfits.
My favorite boasted big
pink polka-dots.

The sink invariably out of reach,
mirror in which I never appeared,
Grandma Eleanor hoisting me up
so my slivers of fingers
could push down on the soap dispenser,

and out came the rush
of cherry almond,
it burst into existence
clear as a color,
or a touch, disembodied
from name or past.
Transformed into recollection.

Sharpness of fruit caught in my hands,
filling my head with the river
which swirled like years
from the faucet
flooding the white-tiled room,
all the rooms of my childhood.


2 Comments on “How the Nose Remembers”

  1. Yousei Hime says:

    You know what I like best (besides that fantastic quote below your blog title) … I love how scent permeates your poem and yet I’m reminiscing and remembering relationships as I read your poem. This just felt so good. Well done. Thank you for participating in the prompt.


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