Angelica

  • Jasmine Cottage

    She’d rented the cottage furnished, which meant that the actual furniture was the special sort you find in these circumstances and had probably been left out for the dustmen by the local War on Want shop. It didn’t matter. She didn’t expect to be here long.

    If Agnes was right, she wouldn’t be anywhere long. Nor would anyone else.

    Camellia, jasmine, heather, orange blossom, osmanthus, wisteria, thyme, angelica, freesia, granny’s nightcap, and English wildflowers.

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  • The Harlot’s House

    We caught the tread of dancing feet,
    We loitered down the moonlit street,
    And stopped beneath the harlot’s house.

    Inside, above the din and fray,
    We heard the loud musicians play
    The “Treues Liebes Herz” of Strauss.

    Like strange mechanical grotesques,
    Making fantastic arabesques,
    The shadows raced across the blind.

    We watched the ghostly dancers spin
    To sound of horn and violin,
    Like black leaves wheeling in the wind.

    Like wire-pulled automatons,
    Slim silhouetted skeletons
    Went sidling through the slow quadrille.

    The took each other by the hand,
    And danced a stately saraband;
    Their laughter echoed thin and shrill.

    Sometimes a clockwork puppet pressed
    A phantom lover to her breast,
    Sometimes they seemed to try to sing.

    Sometimes a horrible marionette
    Came out, and smoked its cigarette
    Upon the steps like a live thing.

    Then, turning to my love, I said,
    “The dead are dancing with the dead,
    The dust is whirling with the dust.”

    But she–she heard the violin,
    And left my side, and entered in:
    Love passed into the house of lust.

    Then suddenly the tune went false,
    The dancers wearied of the waltz,
    The shadows ceased to wheel and whirl.

    And down the long and silent street,
    The dawn, with silver-sandalled feet,
    Crept like a frightened girl.

    The dead are dancing with the dead, the dust is whirling with the dust: angel’s trumpet, violet, white sandalwood, oude, copaiba balsam, angelica, white tea, olibanum, and oakmoss.

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  • Veritas

    Falsehood has no feet: now and again something that is false can start off successfully, but with time, Truth will always prevail.

    The essence of honesty, integrity, and veracity: frankincense, white carnation, angelica, chamomile, and heliotrope.

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  • Vital Fluid

    Modern philosophy has admitted a plenum or universal principle of fluid matter, which occupies all space; and that as all bodies moving in the world, abound with pores, this fluid matter introduces itself through the interstices and returns backwards and forwards, flowing through one body by the currents which issue therefrom to another, as in a magnet, which produces that phenomenon which we call Animal Magnetism. This fluid consists of fire, air and spirit, and like all other fluids tends to an equilibrium, therefore it is easy to conceive how the efforts which the bodies make towards each other produce animal electricity, which in fact is no more than the effect produced between two bodies, one of which has more motion than the other; a phenomenon serving to prove that the body which has most motion communicates it to the other, until the medium of motion becomes an equilibrium between the two bodies, and then this equality of motion produces animal electricity.

    —Wonders and mysteries of animal magnetism displayed; or the history, art, practice, and progress of that useful science, from its first rise in the city of Paris, to the present time. With several Curious Cases and new Anecdotes of the Principal Professors, 1791.

    The breath and tears and pulse of all life; the fluid that flows through all creation, permeating space and time and spirit: olibanum, red benzoin absolute, labdanum, betel leaf, galbanum, mastic, and angelica.

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