Thursday, April 17, 2014

Your Absence Smells like (a Poem for Day Sixteen of PAD)

Hmm . . . I sense a pattern. Midnight approaches and I haven't yet written my poem for the challenge. So here I am again posting when I should be sleeping. 

This poem isn't quite what I wanted to create, but I'm too tired to fight it.

Day Sixteen of PAD:

For today’s prompt, write an elegy. An elegy doesn’t have specific formal rules. Rather, it’s a poem for someone who has died. In fact, elegies are defined as “love poems for the dead” in John Drury’s The Poetry Dictionary. Of course, we’re all poets here, which means everything can be bent. So yes, it’s perfectly fine if you take this another direction–for instance, I once wrote an elegy for card catalogs. Have at it!

photo by Marco Michelini
Can They Smell Your Absence?

Your Absence Smells Like

Cozy smells like thickened casings
of your arms wrapped
around the parts of me
you left behind. Sometimes
I sit, waiting for your appearance,
cross-elbowed, back slumped over
above folded legs, staring
into mirror’s warbled reflection, irises
shifting colors like mood rings.

My life smells like waiting for a sign
you haven’t left me, like you promised
you never would, your bones hardened,
have become cement statues decorating
rose gardens you tended in my youth. Staked
into ashen soil, you try hard to hang on
to vine-y leaves before disintegration
takes over, makes me smell the death
I don’t ever want to face.


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