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I walk through the café of life.

Smell Of Love, Part 2There are several smells along the way. It is a café of smells. There is no escaping beauty, doom, magnificence, banality and orchids. We are swimmers; sinking is not an option.

The Smell of Love is the most noteworthy. It writhes like a golden serpent, sinking deep into fabrics unseen, riding in Dream Territory, speaking to the sounds that came before words.

It is the smell most of us avoid, yet the fragrance most of us seek. The odor undealt-with, the nameless sound we all recognize like a dog’s ears that rise to the Distant Familiar.

We furnish our Closets with the Clothing Of The Day: fish for dinner, fashions for lunch, commitees and meetings for snacks, drunk on soccer games and bingo, bouncing like a ping-pong ball from opinion to fact, controversy to disaster, salvation to Summer Dreams. All in the course of an hour, a moment, a month.

But Love interrupts us.

It says, “excuse me…” and we all stop. Dead in our tracks.

Heart Odors, Part IIIThis thing that comic books are made of, this thing that thickens Watery Life like starch, this thing that subtley changes “overcast” to “sunny”… what IS this thing? And why do we all avoid it? Not only avoid thinking about it, talking about it, feeling it, giving it, receiving it… but … avoid even the Smell of It?

If Love was on the menu, would we order it?

If Love was not on the menu, would we stay in this café?

Is there enough Love on our plate – say, compared to Radishes, Healthy Greens, Atlantic Salmon?

Would we like a bite for dessert? Or did we gorge? Overly on the sloppy mashed potatoes? Or is our mouth crowded with suckers, cigarettes, bubblegum, pistachios, popcorn? “Sorry, I’m busy…” I’m busy dying. I’m busy digesting the world of broken glass and health food. I’m busy trying to evacuate a constipated drain-pipe, trying to avoid yard-sales, trying to forget last year’s faded romance.

We get up in the morning and order our day from the Menu of Life. One small missing ingredient, and we perpetually miss it. And we really miss it. We miss it so much that we miss missing it. And after we’ve missed missing it so much, we actually forget it. We eat sawdust and black pepper and confetti, and we are so proud of “Christmas”; we are so happy with the New Year. Our birthday is approaching, our family wipes the cobwebs from our lips and quietly places orders from the Catalogue Of Smiles.

Heart, Part IV... to be continued ...And whole villages lives off garbage dumps in India, people swarm like flies to protest the loss of trees, Polar Bears drift alone on melting icebergs, a man sits in a doorway with outstretched hands.

One look in the eye: we are all the same.

That fragrant sound, that slight whimper, that sigh.

That color that contains all colors.

The softness, the softness.