A Strange Woman's Familiar Scent
by Travis Blair


I hear the slide of glass door
when she steps out on her patio
a dozen times a night.
Smoke from her cigarillos
rises and scents my air.
She sits in a cheap plastic chair
and talks on her cell phone
to the man she left behind--
sometimes civil conversations
but often hostile fights.

I’ve never seen her come or go
don’t know what she looks like
seen only the butts of her cigarillos
in a blackened Billy Bob’s ash tray.
But I could pick her out of a room
crowded with strange women
by her twangy East Texas drawl
or from that cheap potent smell
of Swisher Sweets hanging heavy
in her lank shadow.







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