An ode to the BPAL bat: lavender-dusted auburn fur, a drop of hops, Roman chamomile, hay absolute, ambrette seed, and sun-warmed leather.
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Sometimes I would venture from my sepulchre to the jazz of night Paris, where having gathered the colours, I would think them over in front of the fire. I could be seen walking through a funeral corridor of my house and descending down a black spiral of steep stairs; rushing underground to Montmartre, all impatience to see the fiery rubies of the Moulin Rouge cross. I wondered thereabouts, then bought a ticket to watch frenzied delirium of feathers, vulgar painted lips and eyelashes of black and blue.
Naked feet, and thighs, and arms, and breasts were being flung on me from bloody-red foam of translucent clothes. The tuxedoed goatees and crooked noses in white vests and toppers would line the hall, with their hands posed on canes. Then I found myself in a pub, where the liqueurs were served on a coffin (not a table) by the nickering devil: “Drink it, you wretched!” Having drunk, I returned under the black sky split by the flaming vanes, which the radiant needles of my eyelashes cross-hatched. In front of my nose a stream of bowler hats and black veils was still pulsing, foamy with bluish green and warm orange of feathers worn by the night beauties: to me they were all one, as I had to narrow my eyes for insupportable radiance of electric lamps, whose hectic fires would be dancing beneath my nervous eyelids for many a night to come.
White gardenia, ambergris bouquet, lavender fougere, orange blossom, melissa, tobacco flower, coriander, ebony wood, ylang ylang, absinthe and aged whiskey.
Nepalese amber, white sandalwood, black peppercorn, ambrette seed, neroli, coconut sugar, cardamom pods, ginger, fennel, bitter almond, liquorice root, henna, copaiba balsam, and spikenard.
The Queen of Sheba, half-demon, they said, on her father’s side, witch woman, wise woman, and queen, who ruled Sheba when Sheba was the richest land there ever was, when its spices and its gems and scented woods were taken by boat and camel-back to the corners of the earth, who was worshipped even when she was alive, worshipped as a living goddess by the wisest of kings, stands on the sidewalk of Sunset Boulevard at 2:00 A.M. staring blankly out at traffic like a slutty plastic bride on a black-and-neon wedding cake. She stands as if she owns the sidewalk and the night that surrounds her.
Honey, myrrh, lily of the valley, rose otto, fig leaf, almond, ambrette, red apple, and warm musk.
Strong as death, and cruel as the grave,
Clothed with cloud and tempest’s blackening breath,
Known of death’s dread self, whom none outbrave,
Strong as death,
Love, brow-bound with anguish for a wreath,
Fierce with pain, a tyrant-hearted slave,
Burns above a world that groans beneath.
Hath not pity power on thee to save,
Love? hath power no pity? Nought he saith,
Answering: blind he walks as wind or wave,
Strong as death.
Unloving love: benzoin, Indian musk, massoia bark, myrrh, ambrette seed, galbanum, bergamot, and fir.