Monday, September 26, 2011

unmistakable aroma

sweet smell punctuated by
chemical overtones;
it's an aroma that permeates
the whole parking lot,
the entire courtyard,
and especially
the elementary school

all it takes is
one little plastic packet
red sauce oozing out of
that white, one-ounce
red-tomato-decorated tube
proclaiming 'ketchup'
(or, perhaps, 'catsup')
for the whole world to see

but if it's been spilled,
even a little bit,
and left to dry, un-cleaned-up
a skin forming as it seems to
shrink in size overnight
we don't need the word on the label
the aroma gives it away

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