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  • I could smell you with my lungs, from 10,000 paces.
    I could smell you with my skin receptors, even through glass windows.

    I could smell you, sense the scent of you, as if I were, in dreams, a passive predator, predating even the ancient seahorse brain I could inhale you with my heart with the waving cilia of silence, I could smell the words upon your breath even before you breathed them.

    Moss, vertigris, ancient islands, fir, pine, the piney islands--the top note of you. Call it Eau de Northeast.

    The middle note was brainstem of basil, secret pepper seeds, the seeded heart, and a yearning towards bergamot. Not the bergamot itself, not the orange allurement or the Earl Grey tea in origins far Eastern, but the scent of a man who is leaning towards what bergamot smells like under his nose when he is in a depressurized cabin sitting on a cloud lake at three per cent humidity recently passing over Greenland.

    The bass note which hearts inhale, the bass note which lungs imbibe, the bass note which might be that thing which, poor detectives of ourselves, we attribute to eyes and nose, the bass note of you was the smell of loneliness which had spread its wings to be eagle-wide inclusive, strong black tea, sweet pink frowsy blousey roses in their first tippings, wild neroli orange, almonds crushed, ginger root, underground root flowerings; the smell of verbs; the way my lungs feel the scent of your intentions.

    (Photo by Susan, harvested hot peppers on the garden table, October 16, 2014)
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