City Smell

by on January 20, 2024 :: 0 comments

photo "Memory Blackhole" by Tyler Malone

Dimly lit under the streetlamps in an old alley at midnight, a nostalgia wells up. A perceptible city smell tickles the nostrils in humidity fueled singed heat. Yeah, the lamps bestow light on the strays lying down on empty alleys—clean, and silent as the rains wash away any debris otherwise invisible to the naked eye, slants through the midnight streetlamp—dark, heavy, blue. To an ever-wakening and heightened sensory perception, a city sleeps, unhinged like exposed skeletons.

The city smells, however, another smell pushing through the winds and more pervasive, makes breathing hard; terrified barks and human squeals tear up the skies. The rains are gone now but smoke burns rise in the atmosphere, buckets drop cling-clang on the ground in haste; sirens of fire trucks, and a few explosive sounds. The strays stop barking. Squeals are quiet too. The burning dissipates. Silence descends; the city smell crawls back, buried into the ground.

editors note:

Nostalgia gets into your bones, but it seeps in through the eyes, ears, and nose first. Then you become what doesn’t exist anymore. ~ Tyler Malone

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