I’m from New Jersey, So I Kind of Like Chemicals
The smell of my uncle’s shed, gasoline and mineral spirits.
My father’s stockpile of lime lawn treatment.
It made our grass dayglow in prom photos.
I rely on mousse and hairspray,
with my hair cropped short, pomade
molding paste, Rough Luxury.
I crave Comet and stain sticks.
Disposable cleansing wipes for:
porcelain sinks, my face and lower orifices.
I collect bottles of Softsoap, but offer
guests grapefruit scented hand foam,
sparkling water infused with citric acid.
I use three different kinds of mouthwash.
As a kid, cinnamon flavored Lavoris
made me break out in hives.
My brother hated mint.
All the kid stuff was bubblegum.
Antifreeze brings me security.
Mudslides, daiquiris, and wine coolers piqued
my interest when listening-in to adult conversations
as did test tube shots at block parties.
Realizing now how much of it was grain alcohol,
an Old Fashioned made with Old English
for a family whose blood hums with machines.