My Philosophy of Smell

Onions reek of tears. Mushrooms have the same aroma of the earth. Grapefruits fill one’s nose with deceitfulness. A whiff of a ripe banana is unfriendly and a clementine aggressive. An apple has a soft radiant quality to it, like raw spinach, which resembles the scent of the sun, while lemons provide an adventurous scent that teleports about the room. Garlic smells hateful. Cinnamon is flirtatious; honey bitter and seductive. Oregano is less attractive but captivating in its promise of sweetness. Grapes flaunt their pureness; cloves their promiscuity; carrots their indifference. Ginger holds a sour resentfulness in one’s nose. Nutmeg functions as its lighter alternative. Cayenne pepper and jalapenos make hot a smell. Vanilla is pleasing and warm, so unlike the prickly scent of vinegar, yet much like the delightful tenderness of blueberries. With one’s eyes closed raisins can be mistaken for polluted grapes. Peaches perfume the air with sophistication; pears fall somewhere between the former fruits, not too meek and not too feisty. Watermelons, and only watermelons, have the fragrance of second chances.

(Originally published at the Eunoia Review here.)

Another Lamb In Need Of Slaughtering

I imagine you walking along the edge of the shadows, using “Q-tips” to remove the skeleton-layered truths about your ears, sticking a finger down your throat to expel your blame-filled stomach, even warming yourself up with your own tears because you’ve tired of fire. I imagine you then closing your eyes so that you lose your shadow, wishing for your horns, your barbed tongue, your hooves to ripen and decay. Perhaps you pluck out your eyes when they don’t. Perhaps you’ll sew up your mouth and penis just so you can refrain from making fog. You’ll even burn your hands to ash. But you’ll still hear of your elephant-like touch, of your snaky tongue banging eardrums, of the imprint left behind by your fingerless fingerprints. And your eyes will sweat enough to remake the Flood. And then your knees might kiss the ground and you might pray to the prayer-answerer to be the next lamb slaughtered.

(This piece was published by The Bookends Review here. Send your work there if you’re interested in publishing.)

Birthdays

The challenge is not to blow out the fire. The fire should only shiver, shiver as if in need of the flames of another fire. And the candles should never weep. They should have wounds but never scars. And before you gather your storm, words must wake, happiness must season voices, a group of lungs melting into a chorus of one. The wish needn’t be wrapped in wrapping paper either. No, the wish should undress itself until its clothed only in the flickering light. And as the darkness falls gray should rise, fumes fragranced by the scent of your younger selves. See, the challenge is not to blow out the fire; it is to convert that fire into smoke.

(This piece was published by The Bookends Review here. Send your work there if you’re interested in publishing.)