Perhaps it’s the true geraniums dressed for winter

as they release oils when brushed by passing legs


Beyond the acrid diesel fumes, beneath the salted air

piercing the viscous light pouring on the boulevard

a perfume, an ancient scent for this valley

and its austere wardrobe of concrete, steel


Light pouring in sheets slices the moist salted air

flashes, then stills to lay thick on each flat plane


The foot-worn trail of pavement wears an icy sheen

glinting sharply here, there, across the promenade

asphalt’s warmth competes

with the slick chill of the earth


The night’s mist is replaced by steam vapors rising

tendrils seeking openings in loose-fitting overcoats


I walk fully open into the shifting cold morning

the sun’s rays shimmer on a wall of dark reflection

The scent of Himalayan geraniums

Overflow their concrete basin


This brisk scent rekindles the morning, restores

to the concrete canyon a deep sensual empathy


With deep love for this port, doubtless, the City’s gardener

has graced the thick seaborne air blanket with geraniums



Michael Theroux


Michael Theroux writes from Northern California. His deeply published career has spanned botanist, environmental health specialist, green energy developer and resource recovery web site editor. Entering the creative writing field late in life at 72, Michael is now seeking publication of his cache of art writings which include two novels and perhaps 400 poems and short stories. Some of his shorter works may be found in Down in the Dirt, Ariel Chart, 50WS, Academy of the Heart and Mind, CafeLit, Poetry Pacific, Last Leaves, Backwards Trajectory, Small Wonders, The Acedian Review and the Lothlorien Poetry Journal.

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