Cigarette Smoke


smells like the fleeting black cat

and the fleeting blue night

watching the river efface itself

in the yawn of dawn


...smells like bygone movie stars

made of so many shades of

black and white

lingering in menagerie settings.

Their ashtrays smoke and burn

forever (or until

film noir goes out of style).


...smells like a slow afternoon

with coffee as your tour companion

sitting in a dying diner

where at least the jukebox

and your cellphone are friendly,

talking about nothing that will

ever be important

(but at that moment seems imminent)


...smells like a man approaching his twenties

(or maybe thirties)

kissing you on the shoulder

when you're still 17 (cause he don't know).

Like an alley that resolves itself into

a major road and light-jam up ahead

Like wandering the suburbs

at 4 in the morning because

you want insomnia more than a car


Like my(your) life in the

wild red corvette of adolescence

Like coming home too late in the night

with cigarette smoke in your hair

and clinging to a forgotten Tool t-shirt

...and your mother notices while you try to say

it must have stunk you up at the pool place

...and your mother sighs and says:

you're gonne die young

and maybe I/you will...