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Not Chanel No.5 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

My mother does not wear perfume
She applies makeup to her eyelids
in the morning before work
while her hair sits atop her head in curlers,
but she does not wear perfume

The bottles on her bathroom counter
are not completely full,
but they gather dust
and sit unused
They must have been used when she wore
more makeup

And yet there is a scent
that is unmistakably hers
It is a mixture of soft flowers,
cotton,
and something that I can't describe

I have opened bottles of vanilla,
canisters of cinnamon,
and bags of brown sugar;
I have stalked through nature
and tried to capture every smell,
but I cannot capture that scent

All in all,
I suppose that it's for the best
When I inhale that scent
I do not instantly try to place it
Instead I feel a sense of comfort
because I am reminded of the powerful woman
who is my mother

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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