At first there will be so much else happening you will not notice it is missing.
Then you will puzzle over the odd taste of a muffin,
the strange lack of clean smells in the shower.
Then it will be gone like a wall between you and the world.
Is the house on fire?
Is someone brewing coffee?
Are you wearing deodorant?
You cannot tell.
It is perhaps the subtlest sense to lose.
My grandparents’ house smelled like grapefruit.
Coffee shops smell like nostalgia and home and laptops and delight.
Autumn smells like leaves.
Children smell like shampoo (sometimes).
At the trendy hippie store with the handmade products, you used to smell all the soaps.
You start asking people “How long did it take for you?”
You stop asking when someone tells you nine months.
One day, a month later, it all descends again suddenly and without warning.
Everything is twice as strong and twice as precious.
Coffee is beautiful.
Soap is amazing.
People smell like people, a little too much, but sweat is alive.
The cat smells like the cat again.
Sometimes you stick your head in the pantry because there is saffron in there.
You stand on the front porch in the morning and watch the dog and smell the world.