What’s that acrid, dreadful odor?
A decaying animal within our walls?
That’s happened once or thrice—
A facet of our coexistence
In a world where our presence
Sometimes unsettles the local fauna
But no; this scent is different:
So pungent it crosses
The nausea threshold
Casting its power
Just feet from where we dine
We set forth on a sniffer’s journey
Visiting the usual suspects—
Refrigerator, waste receptacle…
We open our back door
The night air earns an A.
Then we inch toward that anomaly:
Our aging dracaena, cut down over the years
To a stubble of its former self
We’d noted with pleasure a new shoot
Ascending with first-ever blossoms
For a week we’d smiled at this new growth—
A sign of welcome possibilities to our aging selves
But as we neared, the stench overwhelmed–
Our floral future: a stink bomb on stalk
The google consult IDs dracaena fragrans,
“Will flower indoors once a year—“
More often when outside.
Though ours has graced both locales for decades
And never behaved thus before…
This bounty occurs, one expert says,
“If you treat it very well..a bold ascent specimen
with multiple crowns, small spray of fragrant white flowers.”
As “fragrant” was not our descriptor of choice,
We pruned our old friend,
With hope lovely leaves will overgrow the surgical site.
And we are left to ponder
This welcome/unwelcome event