Leotards soaked with jasmine
and sweat that didn’t stink,
because I was young and pure,
(but not so pure).
Could you smell me now,
maybe in a health food store,
lifting a bottle of yellow, oily perfume
to your face?
Tell me what I meant to you,
dancing in the studio or in the club.
Tell me more than that I was unmitigated disaster,
or that I had the skinniest arms you’d ever seen,
or that I was a stone-cold-fox.
Tell me how you’d feel now
I am no longer lithe or young,
no longer reeking of ancient flowers.
Tell me if you can imagine
how fragile I really was back then,
dressing for dance class
and spilling a bottle of jasmine
all over my scratchy, black, synthetic tights.