Sunday, April 22, 2012

Scent

R.A.D. Stainforth contemplates scent ...



Summer nights,
I wake to your scent,

stubborn as marigolds,
near the bureau
that kept your lipstick
and perfume.

I try to dream again,
but stumble
bleary-eyed,
to the toilet.

My face finds yours,
cold in the mirror,
your breasts
heavy in quicksilver;

you smile, dab a bit
behind each of my ears.


tk/April 2012


image: Alex Stoddared

53 comments:

  1. lovely. i have bottles on my mom's perfumes on her now my dresser. so evocative. have you seen the movie about scents i think it is called "Perfume."

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  2. Yes, isn't that the movie where the guy harvests various scents from women?

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  3. I really like this poem, but I'm having naughty thoughts reading it. I'm bad.......

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  4. I really like saying the two words "scent" and "breasts" ... this poem is simply beautiful ...

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  5. Never saw the movie Perfume, but I have read the book and it's well worth a read. Was afraid this would end tragic because of the drowning man in the image... *smile* Great work as always!

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  6. lovely piece again Miss Tess...

    JJRod'z

    btw, the only collection i have and cant stop myself from buying - Perfumes and colognes...

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  7. This is a beautiful work. I love pieces about our senses.

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  8. yow tess!!!! this room in my head filled with scent reading these words . . . my nana's perfume, my son and daughter's baby scents, hooooooo we're so lucky . . . steven

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  9. Sensuous and imaginative, Tess.

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  10. R.A.D., you make it even more beautiful...thank you...

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  11. JJ Roa, I adore perfumes...I wear one for a year or two and then move on to something new...right now mine's Acqua di Parma...it's an old scent...once unisex...worn by Cary Grant...

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  12. There is intense power in scent.

    Beautiful line: "stubborn as marigolds"

    I love talking to myself in poetry. I read this as "lost self" cold in the mirror. But I think you're talking about an old lover.

    rosemarymint.wordpress.com

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  13. Rosemary, I was actually inspired by a ghost at Willow Manor, whose scent in the bedroom is so very strong it sometimes wakes me.

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  14. tess, your poem is poignant and
    sensual - well done.

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  15. This really captures the mood of the picture. I especially like the quicksilver reference. Mercurial?

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  16. scent is such an evocative thing....carrying you here or there into memory...and to look in the mirror and see them in yourself...nice tess...

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  17. I really like the whole thing, but the third stanza is the most powerful to me.

    Mike

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  18. I had the image of a lover who had died while reading this. Scents are the strongest link to memory, so they say. Very scent-sual!

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  19. The moment I read your poem I was struck with the feeling of supernatural which you verified with the ghost explanation. You are truly a great writer and this piece is excellent. You awaken the senses and set them on edge!

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  20. i like the flowers that keep the lipstick and perfume

    altered states

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  21. i like the flowers that keep the lipstick and perfume

    altered states

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  22. Love the poem. Love the image.

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  23. nothing like a scent to transport one into past - "stubborn as marigolds" is perfect, and everything about this poem leads me to some half-forgotten memory that has me wondering, is it mine? or yours? - the best kind of poem, in my book

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  24. this is so beautiful...the memories a perfume holds...a masterpiece..x

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  25. Exquisite, Tess. Such a compelling image... no escaping the trace of maternal scent which triggers yearning which triggers anger which triggers mourning.... xxxj

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  26. Oh that movie was freaky. Especially at the end where he mesmerizes the whole crowd and simply walks away to carry on his dirty deeds.
    This is lovely Tess, sometimes we look in the mirror and wonder who it is staring back at us, don't we.

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  27. Dear Tess: The poem's voice, and the character reading the poem creatively switch roles for awhile. A wonderful twist like twister, as one never knows which part love entangles their lives The interplay of the written and the read poem(thank-you Ronaldo Stainforth)do have excellent parlay.A thoroughly thought-provoking poem; minimalist yet rich with heady embellishment.

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  28. "stubborn as marigolds", perfect.

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  29. Your poetry every week, manages to turn everyday comings and goings into life with a little more pizzazz. I could say it was in the scent dabbed behind your ear..... but no, it is in your creative and provocative way with words. Thank you for sharing.

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  30. Sensual, metaphysical, several role reversals,
    reminding each of us that a strong scent
    can raise us out of sleep, or color our
    dreams. There seems to be a male voice
    and a female voice leaping between lines;
    marvelous word play. Your ghost explication
    propels our imaginations off into several
    dimensions.

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  31. I find the poem vivid and enchanting, very real, but it's reading (his reading actually) it's out of bounds! Very nicely read!

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  32. One of my favorite parts is how you try (and fail) to return to dreaming.

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  33. Scents of past delights
    Linger where I miss you most
    In places we were

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  34. Kinda made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

    In a good way.

    =)

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  35. Ghostly scents? Beautiful words. Marigolds, yes and lilies which always seem to be associated with death, almost cloying.

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  36. One of my favorites of yours now, Tess. Amazing that it came from this photo prompt! Stainforth's presentation was, as usual, totally captivating.

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  37. Who is this mMercurial quicksilver character confronting Tess in her dreams late at night at Wuthering Heights Manor ?

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  38. "Your breasts heavy in quicksilver"... I love that, though I have no idea what it is. Yet, poetry is for enjoying, not for scrutinizing, most of the times :-) Very charming poem, Tess.
    Best, M.

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  39. Mariya, I love the word "quicksilver", not only for its use in mirrors, and in the vintage mercury glass I collect, but for its lovely metaphorical meaning: quick changing.

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  40. This one is very haunting - you've been thinking of ghosts again, haven't you? Me too.

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  41. Beautiful poem, Tess, I'm intrigued by your ghost:)

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  42. a sensual moment you have captured here.

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  43. I find this haunting and sad, Tess. To me, it reads like sorrow of a woman who has left a part of herself in the operating room, and has not yet discovered that they didn't cut out her femininity as well. It's still with her, struggling to get her attention.

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  44. Wow....I don't know how you got to this from that prompt...but wow (again). This is so otherworldly. Great stuff. Vb

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  45. Quicksilver is one of my favorite words - there's so much to be seen in it. A delightful poem that ricochets right off the marigold scent.

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  46. Lovely! The penultimate verse sent me into a delightful little reverie!

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  47. "Heavy in quicksilver" - wow that's amazing.

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  48. Lovely poetry .. whether it's perfume, dusting powder, freshly cut grass, rain, scents are magic memory makers.

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  49. I love perfumes....i tend to wear something different every week.....and yes scents can trigger memories so strongly.

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  50. mmm - scent ... there's nothing like it and I think it might be a dying art; went to perfumery in Grasse sev years ago and there are only a couple left that make perfume from "scratch" because of the cost, and also, the rarity of "noses" - fascinating business all the same ... my own fav scent has gone out of bus but I sometimes find it on the Internet ... "Je Reviens" from the House of Worth has a very interesting back story ... cool prompt Tess ... thanks

    http://nsaynne.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/living-with-a-wolf/

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  51. Thank you dear readers for your kind and generous comments...you make it so easy and so very rewarding to share my work...

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Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)