Stephen Watkins


Awake with product in my nose become memory manifest-

Memory remembering when the smell became pervasive;

The first time- sex and cigarettes, booze to match,

Hearing laughter, smiling at the Fall that rose to become the Summer Sun.


Vanilla and lavender are creamy smoothness,

Watering the dessert that is humanity after body’s feast.

Coconuts of the tropics, the lands yet to be experienced, to see,

Culminating in bikini images and white sparkling beaches, hut to be found.


Sensory neurons perceive the home of these smells,

Brown streaking black blowing wildly windy as the street flows beyond,

Sun dappled vanilla smooth crooked to the dash above and below,

Set dyed specific, the other holding addictions too sweet to quit.


Taken into the wood where corruption is natural and intended,

Growth derived from chemical reaction and basic acid fall,

Tramping along detritus paths home to new owners, creeping life

The sun here, too, through the clouds and leaves and dust; beauty.


Found in the snows that fall early and clump late, melting,

Dripping down the gutterpaths to plunk in pools of reflection,

Ineffective star illuminating, not radiating;

Vigor near lost, saved by soft words from caring graceful lips.


Exploded from the ravaging cloudways of warming,

Mixing pressure pockets avenging time’s untimely demise,

Reborn with a roar in violent invisible brushstrokes ripping at sapling art;

And found under cloth and huddled, lips interlocking safety.


Memory and reality mixing readily, steadily to confound, confuse, arouse;

Things once lost, rediscovered in the embodiment of playful innocence;

Immortal sun glinting off incisors exposed by mistake, no longer mistaking;

After time interminable, the nomad has settled.

Euphemism Campus Box 4240 Illinois State University, Normal, IL 61790-4240