September 20, 2009

Peace - Roxana Illuminated Perfume

Monday September 21st, is the International Day of Peace, a call to attention, as Peace is "a precious need and also a calling".

Thich Nhat Hahn writes eloquently about the juxtapositions of peace and violence in this world:

They woke me this morning
to tell me my brother had been killed in battle.
Yet in the garden, uncurling moist petals,
a new rose blooms on the bush.
And I am alive, can still breathe the fragrance of roses and dung,
eat, pray, and sleep.
But when can I break my long silence?
When can I speak the un-uttered words that are choking me?

The results of violence and the absence of peace require the expression of grief and healing from its effects. The violence in this world operates as a spiraling self feeding force that can be broken by the moments of peace available to us all. There are are natural reminders around us of peace. They are reminders of an alternate reality that can teach and heal and strengthen us so that we ourselves can also become manifestations of peace through cultivating and maintaining a peaceful center. There is a connection to the still presence and awareness of beauty and the passing of time and peace.


SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells. Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours. Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

Truly peaceful is living with a full awareness and participation in the passage of time and the seasons, especially now that autumn weather is harvesting its distillation of summer into a wine for the deepest rest of winter.

Roxana of Illuminated Perfumes recently sent me her interpretation of Peace in perfume form. It was created in honor of International Peace Day.

It seems very autumnal, ripe with spicy sweetness and calm, and reminds me of hay heated in the sun and honey and cinnamon on dark bread. It is ephemeral, as are all truly pure botanical perfumes. It feels like you are anointing yourself with the essence of the year's harvest. It would be perfect for reminding yourself to slow down, cultivate peace in every step, fully enjoy the sweetness of the fleeting passage of time, to fully experience and be part of the peace and beauty of the season. I can see it could be worn during meditation or yoga or even during a horseback ride. I am sure that animals would not be spooked by it, as they might be by other perfumes made of more alien components.

For more information on International Peace Day
For more information on Thich Nhat Hahn and Peace is Every Step
For more information on Roxana's Peace Perfume

Others also posting about International Peace Day:
Bitter Grace Notes:
Examiner, Cleveland:
Examiner, Portland:
Illuminated Perfume:
Memory and Desire:
Perfume Shrine:
Perfume Smellin' Things:
Scent hive:
The Non-Blonde:


ScentScelf said...

What a beautiful start to my morning, the realm Keats created for me followed up the conjuring you do when describing Roxana's Peace: "hay heated in the sun and honey and cinnamon on dark bread." And what timeliness, in a period which for me has been very much about slowing down and absorbing moments.

Perfumeshrine said...

I really enjoyed reading Thich Nhat Hahn's poem of which I was unaware of till now. Thanks for the thoughts and the prose!

Lucy said...

Thanks, SS - somehow it all works together for me. More peace in my life is the aim. I look forward to reading your take on it all.

Lucy said...

Dear Perfume Shrine,

I enjoy your site so much.
Yes, Thay is a great poet. I have read others of his which really affect me so deeply, they are a combination of ancient and modern poetic forms and timeless peacefulness.

Roxana said...

What a treat it is to wonder over to your blog filled with your own words of enchantment as well as others like
Thich Nhat Hahn & Keats. The way your craft your posts is so lovely and eloquent. Thank you for adding your own signature beauty to our little Peace blogging synergy, I am really grateful.

Beth Gehring said...

The synchronicity of your experience to my experience just amazes me. I am so honored to be a part of this blogothon with you, it's truly a new treasure in my life. I look forward to getting to know you better and I am just blown away by your words.....

chayaruchama said...

Lovely one-

How mystical and filled with the wonder and beauty of your soul...
It just floors me.

Lucy said...

Ah C, you are a beauty who sees beauty everywhere...

Trish said...


I am late to posting and now can finally read your post!! So lovely to read your thoughts.


Flora said...

Such sublime poetry, thank you for such beauty! (The perfume ain't bad either!)

Heather said...

Beautiful! Your description of the fragrance, its honey and hay and autumnal spicy sweetness - is perfect. And you chose a wonderful poem by a poet I'm sad to say I have not paid as much attention to as others. (I have trouble with things like "Thou watchest" because I hear echoes of religious reading sthat I just haven't managed to get past. But reading this to myself, I hear the music in it, soft and rounded and golden. I'm very happy to be a part of today's event with you, and congratulate you on a wonderful blog.

Lucy said...


I thought it would be appropriate to bring Thay and Keats to bear on peace since their words are so precisely meaningful as to peace...

Lucy said...


Those Romantics had a sometimes antiqued way of expression but that was more because they wanted to get back to a time before the industrial revolution so I give them that, it was their time which was so hard to adjust to. I hope you get to go see Jane Campion's Bright Star soon -- I found it an impetus to revisit Keats poetry and letters which has been incredibly rewarding.

Lucy said...

Dear Scent Hive/Trish, this all turned out to be quite a pleasure...

Acaislim said...

Such sublime poetry, thank you for such beauty! (The perfume ain't bad either!)

pheromones attract women said...

What a wonderful poet so meaningful and you feel the description of fragrance that was so sweet.Its also reminds me of an alternate reality that can teach,heal and strength. :)