I’ve always enjoyed smelling people as they walk by, generally inside modes of transportation. Tight spaces, forced hallways. On trains, buses, planes. I inhale the waft they leave behind, the layers of their days. Their mornings, their showers, their indiscretions.
I generally like the smell of women more. When an intriguing woman walks by, I make my nostrils sive-like to distill her smell and form an opinion about her. Not so much men, women are the ones, licking at my nose, apple sweet.
Once, there was a Scorpio man I was in love with who was not in love with me, which at that time in my life was the only kind of man I could love.
I could smell him before he came into a room or after he left it. I don’t mean his cologne; I mean him. His being, his incense. His life, what he showered with, what he left on him from where he’d just been. I loved it. I loved feeling in tune with him, if only in this way. It made me feel poetic.
One day, I was walking down the hallway to my office and I smelled him. It always made my heart gymnastic; I went in, blood cooling after the swell. But, it seemed he wasn’t there.