Sole Survivor Finds A Relic: Chanel No. 5 – Teresa Sutton
If I try to get everything back,
sometimes pure essence of a single flower
is all that comes when I call.
And sometimes, all I smell is the nothing
of fire because flames only smell
like whatever they’re consuming.
But I keep hearing the slam of the oven door,
the scuff of pointed shoes on tile,
the brush of a straw broom.
Pieces were pulled from me, parts thinned
to raw bargains with the stretch of years.
The small glass stopper on an invisible bottle
is plucked out and wrecked,
but the scent of liberated spirit,
the pink cabbage petals of a may rose,
jasmine, a clean note of the Arctic—these linger in all the guilty spaces
where I imagine myself climbing
over my dead
to make a life at the edge of a forest.
Teresa Sutton is a poet and a teacher. She teaches at Marist College and lives in Poughkeepsie, NY. She has two grown children. Her third chapbook, “Breaking Newton’s Laws,” won 1st place in the Encircle Publication 2017 Chapbook Competition; it was a top-12 finalist in the 2015 Indian Paintbrush Chapbook Competition, a finalist in the 2016 Minerva Rising Chapbook Competition, and earned an honorable mention in the 2015 Concrete Wolf Poetry Chapbook Competition. She earned her MFA from Solstice Creative Writing Program at Pine Manor College. She has a MA in literature from Western Connecticut State University and a MS in education from SUNY New Paltz. She earned her BA in English from SUNY Albany.