Senses Affected

"Ariadne" by William Whitaker, original pastel, 1983

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is a man you wanted to love
who did not feel the same.

Smells like sour milk or funeral flowers.

Sounds like a plead quiet and empty
when the pain is still new
or the echo of a scream
that hurts your throat
the acid rising in your darkest hours.

Stings like a slap
sudden and unexpected
leaving you stunned and wondering—

Tastes like gravel or sand
—a million beaches of disappointment—
turning to cement so heavy on your heart
you feel hope and dreams die.

Looks more like the end as every day spent
holds only memories of those once shared
all the more bitter
since you honestly cared.

Copyright © 2002 Patricia Petro • All rights reserved.
Painting: “Ariadne” by William Whitaker, original pastel, 1983.