City of smells-the sweet
rot of papaya rind behind
every fence and the sour musk
of piss on broken bricks mix
an estuarys mossy muck with
diesel smoke and taxi fumes,
and a dead rat laid out neatly
on a shoe by a thoughtful tourist.
Arturo says it smells like rain.
But we may have time to find
a sacred site on the waterfront
buried in bougainvillea, a cafe named
The Gates of Heaven, a place,
some locals know, where Che lay low,
in its smells of incense and coffee, its
emptiness and jazz, where it is possible,
still, to have nothing and be nothing
but happy watching a freighter stuck
in chocolate silt disintegrate on Easter.