JASMINE



You smell it first, the warm breath like an aura
of peaches poached in Riesling, drizzled honey,
spreading for miles its cloying miasma
making cats swoon and fat-eyed flies drowsy.
This before you see it curling up
from your mother’s front door: constellations
of morning stars so white they’re almost blue
against the glossy jade of spearhead leaves,
swooning albino starfish in a olivine sea.
The perfume is palpable, an invisible force field
of vanilla purity dedicated to gods of nostalgia.
Doubt not the power of this apotropaic flower,
holy to the gardens of Persia and Moorish Spain,
exotic interloper in otherwise tame suburbia.

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