After a hot, dry week

What is that smell called?–I asked–
rain on dirty asphalt–
the steam rising with a scent
pronounced and like no other

We ran to the shops, pelted
with raindrops the size of buckshot.
“Petrichor,” he said
and I shook my head–

No, that is the rain on the dirt.
This is the smell of soldiers going to war
and their mothers’ heartbreak

“Why,” he asked, “do you have to do that?”
What? I eyed the shop shelves–and my list.
“Make me feel this ache?”

He paused, a pound of bacon
in his hand
in my peripheral

I didn’t start the war–I said
picking up a can of coffee, and
putting it into our cart

Give me your two cents

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