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cover art Poems from the Other Land by Ruth Mark
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S c e n t   B o t t l e s

“Houses and rooms are full of perfumes, the shelves are crowded
with perfumes,”

(from Walt Whitman’s Song of Myself)

Clean lines on that bottle
its silver top still shiny despite age.
Blue one shaped like a pear
beside it, small and dainty.
Little squat one hiding behind
the marbles, the latter a prize
from a long-ago Christmas cracker.
Issey’s 3D triangle obscures
my brother and sister-in-law’s
wedding photo, sepia hues
just apparent from this angle.
Amber fluid in frosted cylinder
my favourite and not just
for your name – Contradiction –
scent of me captured in glass.
Regimented row on this window
ledge, most of them half-full.
A shelf in a flat crowded with scent:
bottled memories all, memories
of days and nights long past.


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