Admission, Children's Unit
Like the story of St. Lawrence that repelled me
when I heard it in high school, how he taught
his disciples to recognize the smell
of sin, then sent them in pairs through the Roman Empire,
separating good from evil, brother from brother.
Scrap of legend I'd forgotten until, interviewing a woman,
I drew my breath in and smelled
her, catching a scent that was there, then not there.
She said her son set fire to his own room,
she'd found him fanning it with a comic, and what
should she have done? Her red hair
was pulled back in a braid, she tugged at its ...