On Having No Photograph of Myself Smoking

How cool did I look?

Golden Virginia – all burnished sun glow Malick Far From Heaven pastoral sweet baccy slow finger rolling, prison-thin when necessary, slightly wet lip-dangle rizzle-burn.

How cool did I look? What did my breath smell like?

Silk Cut – all smooooth throat-soothing Bacall sheen of silver smoke wafting down a treat, fibrey filter for final stubbing and wondering when the light would fall on satin next.

How cool did I look? What did my lungs sound like?

San Toy Cheroots – all teeth-clench Eastwood man-with-no-name stubbly grease-face squint, rough leaved cigarillo bandido fistful of chocolate-soot fer-chrissake-don’t inhale.

How cool did I look? What did my lips taste of?

Woodbines – all honeysuckle gasper-creeper devil’s darning needles of Mum and Dad’s mouths did not harvest-glow them, did not Lauren-noir them, did not Clint-poncho them in my child eyes.

My sixteen years behind the tab bequeath no movie stills,

so the question will ever curl and coil: how cool did I look?