The scent of a poem can drive me to distraction,
like spores from a page of mildewed putrefaction,
accumulated fluff and dust from under the bed,
or the grey and blue mould on a slice of old bread;
sometimes it’s cherry blossom dancing in trees,
an explosion of honeysuckle on a summer breeze,
a meadow of wildflowers or freshly mown hay,
a stranger’s steaming overcoat on a rainy day.
It could be the lather on my granddad’s shaving brush,
the lipstick on a bed-time kiss or my mothers’ “Hush!”
the just-bathed drowsiness of my grandson’s embrace
of the buttery toast crumbs on his good-morning face:
poetichor drifts, ghostlike, from line to line,
a multitude of odours fading over time.
Kim M. Russell, 26th July 2020
A Sunday sonnet