Friday, January 8, 2010


I love
kissing the back of Opal's head where the hair rubbed off while she was sleeping. I pause for a moment to take a deep, rich inhale while I am there. Someone compared it's swirling, velour mandala to a crop-circle, which seems more than appropriate. It feels like the fuzz of a fresh peach brushing against my top lip as I take a whiff to see if it's ripe.

And then I smell the nape of her neck. A very specific spot clear behind her ear. It's actually less like smelling, more like a hug/hold/caress/sniff. There is so much concentrated into that one tiny pocket of flesh, revealing itself as I squish up my nose the way a bloodhound would:

I smell the remnants of sweat, perhaps from having too many blankets the night before or from where she fell asleep on my bare arm for too long during a nap and when she finally arose, dreamily, unsure, she peeled away noodles of wet brown curls on that side. Or maybe it was from when she cried in the carseat half the way home in spite of my best efforts at rousing her with a continuous stream of "This Little Light of Mine."

I smell my own milk in it's sour, much traveled form-- having come through me and into her and then back out of her mouth in the form of thin, muddled-white rivers, soaking the collar of her fleece jammy and pooling in her neck crease like rain water in a gutter.

I smell the inexplicable scent of skin after having been through a windstorm, in spite of the fact that we take great pains in protecting her delicate skin from the elements.

I smell the faintest residue of lavender bubbles from her most recent bath, as subtle as a memory.

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