Janis Ian remembers

photographs –
watercolours of the past, but I
remember cigarettes, the coffee rings
of old regrets

And the smell and the taste of you, you who used to smoke, once as we used to smoke because – as he said once – “god damn, you look sexy when you smoke”. And unbelievably, I bought it. Line and sinker. Sinking down into the chair which is part wicker and part leather and me who is part wicked and part lecher. Pistachios gather their forgotten exoskeltons upon the knights of the laminex  table. And I remember cigarettes. The packet left behind upon the dresser, white and gold and gold and white, aromatic with arsenic and old lace curtains in a bluestone cottage with a rose bush growing up the wall. You, who curved that glowing ember, tucked into your own palm, as casual as an extra finger on your hand. Lawyer and layabout, you smoked bluecollar brutal. Rolling, rolling, one and you and me and the beat of a kelpie tail in a Castlemaine cottage that was so quiet that the crackling of the fireplace was gunshot to churchgoers.

Whenever there is sadness and solitude, displace it with gratitude and madness.


Categorized as musing

By Eleanor Jackson

Eleanor Jackson is a Filipino Australian poet, performer, arts producer, cyclist, writer, gal about town, feminist, freewheeler, and friend.

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