Mother compliments the bridge of my aquiline nose. Yet, she’s disbelieving when I tell her that upstairs, baby’s diaper is fetid,
soggy. Inside my twelve-year-old nostrils, tiny, sensitive antennae wave and stretch—absorbing signals. They quiver from the chemicals in Mother’s hair color.
A sharp knock on the door. Mother drops a plate; pizza slices scatter and strew.
“Don’t open,” I say, inhaling the odor of alcohol, another woman’s scent, and the simmer of anger from outside the door.
“It’s Father, I must,” Mother says.
Father’s knuckles rap, urgent.
I cannot convince her; when I lost one sense, another sharpened.