Sunday, September 20, 2009

Peace, poetry and perfume

"War is a quarrel between two thieves too cowardly to fight their own battle; therefore they take boys from one village and another village; stick them into uniforms, equip them with guns, and let them loose like wild beasts against each other."

Thomas Carlyle, as quoted by Emma Goldman.

Monday (9/21) is International Peace Day, and even though my inner cynic can't think of a single government on the planet that's actually promoting peace, I am happy to nod to the observance and the good intentions behind it. The decision to hope for peace is itself a gesture of peacemaking. For a glimpse of the futility of human conflict, consult poet and conscientious objector William Stafford.

Impressions of Peace

In honor of peace day, and as part of a global peace initiative that you can read about here, Roxana Villa of Illuminated Perfume has created a fragrance we'll call the peace perfume--though Roxana points out that "the perfume does not have a written name, the name is the actual peace symbol."

The peace perfume opens with a surprisingly snappy citrus chord. I was expecting something quiet, even soporific, but the top notes here suggest joy and exhilaration--a nice way of recognizing that peace is an active good, a state that promotes happiness.

Floral notes emerge in the heart, and take the perfume to a much mellower place. These are soft flowers, funk-free and warmed with ginger. They have a clean, soapy quality I like, though not everyone would enjoy their slightly alkaline character. The base took a long time to reveal itself on me. When it finally arrived, it was dominated by a smooth tobacco note, sweetened with vanilla.

The peace perfume has a bit of the raw edge most naturals display. If you're addicted to perfectly polished scents, this one might not please you. That issue aside, though, this is a thoroughly lovable fragrance. It's not flat, but it evolves predictably and pleasantly. My only quibble is with the sweetness of the base, but that's a matter of personal taste. Most people wouldn't find it overly sweet.

Notes for the peace perfume: Clementine, Neroli, Ginger, Champa, Blue Lotus
Vintage Mysore Sandalwood, Tobacco and Vanilla Orchid Bean.

Read more about the perfume here, and get details for purchase at the Illuminated Perfume Etsy site.

Check back here for an upcoming post on the peace perfume from Chayaruchama.

More peace perfume bloggers:

Indie Perfumes
Memory and Desire
Perfume Shrine
Perfume Smellin' Things
Scent Hive
The Non-Blonde

Justice and Peace, Corrado Giaquinto (1703-1765)

Peace Has Begun, Greg Spalenka, 2009. Available as a limited edition print here.


Perfumeshrine said...

It's difficult to see how peace could be promoted for long on any place on earth. We're lucky to not have witnessed war in our lifetime (here we're the first generation not to since literally eons, which is impressive). But at least thinking about it does accomplish something I guess. (Built it and it will come... etc). There was an Olympic "idea" proposed internationally around the time of the Athens Olympics, an incentive of children here on the stepping stone of "perhaps if warfare would stop for 15 days for the Games like it did in antiquity, then it might be doable to stop altogether". Suffice to say it didn't... But we're dreaming anyway.

Illuminated Perfume said...

The only politician I've seen actively promote peace is Kucinich, in fact when I heard him speak here locally here brought me to tears. I had never heard a politician with such visionary a Dept. of Peace instead of a Dept. of Defense!

Thank you for adding your wit and impressions to this blogging event Maria.

chayaruchama said...

Sweet love-

Thank you for our friend Emma ;-)
LOVE that woman....

I always follow your machinations, wit-ful one.

Peace is a process; I don't see it as a static entity, as much as a flocculation.

Flora said...

Lovely descriptons, and we can all hope for peace one day, can't we? (Love the Carlyle quote too, it is absolutely true and correct!)

Heather said...

Maria, I'm a long-time fan of yours and it's a great pleasure to share this particular event with you in spirit. I'm fairly cynical about the prospects of large-scale peace myself, but I'd happily settle for no genocides. Or, no Genocides in Africa. It would be a good start.

Thank you for your consistently excellent writing and original wit.

Heather said...

And thank you - I almost forgot - for the link to Stafford, whom I love. I hear echoes of Shelley's Ozymandias in there.

BitterGrace said...

Thank you, Heather, and I'm glad you enjoyed the Stafford. He was a remarkable artist.

Thanks, Roxana, for letting me be part of the event. The scent is lovely, and I hope it furthers the cause. Peace be with us all.