I have a new perfume.
The smell of a single mom trying to survive on an undeveloped property.
My nail polish is dirt.
My hands smell of raw meat and Inukshuk kibble.
My hair, full of smoke from burning the relentless brush.
I often reflect on the smells in a day, a season, a month, that are becoming a part of me.
Wild chamomile tea and fireweed vinegar brewing.
Honey, beehives, honeycomb, wax.
Coffee beans that I grind with my woman-powered hand grinder.
Honey bucket stink.
That rotten hide I dragged over for the dogs.
The methane and algae in the ponds around us that I bathe in throughout the day.
Trying to wash away the dirt, smoke and rotten meat only to create an awful combination of all three in one.
Wild rose petals, clover, fresh pickled eggs.
Homemade jams, dandelions, fresh whipper-snipped grass.
The smell of my pillow as I flop face down in exhaustion every night.
Spruce sap, birch water.
Wet dog cuddles.
The land teaches me every day in every way about the scents of survival.
I embrace every one.
And they embrace me.
My arms and legs are covered in bruises and cuts.
The tree’s roots seem to reach out and pull me in so they can get a closer whiff.
Eau de chainsaw oil and gasoline.
I have to let them know that I won’t be defeated.