Elizabeth Smither


Wearing Paloma Picasso

We leaned — two strangers — over
a balcony at a party where a tree
below, thick with blossom and bees
gave what you thought was a desirous scent.

What is the name of that tree, you asked
and I who could not smell it
or my own French perfume, newly splashed
about my throat and on my hair

said I didn’t know. Did those
white packed blossoms smell at all?
Were bees good judges? It’s me
I wanted to say to the fool. It’s me.




Author’s Note


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