Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Incomparable Scent Of Heaven In The Spring!

Every year I wait for my my small, but spreading despite lack of proper care, patch of Lily-of-the-Valley to bloom. It's my 'birth month flower' but even if it wasn't I would equate the scent of these amazing, beautiful, whitish globes with heaven. I feel the same way about Lilacs. Back East where I grew up, they Lilacs &d Lily-of-the-Valley always bloomed near Memorial Day (close to "my" day) and friends would give me armloads of blooms as gifts. I also think that these are two scents from nature that science and plant lore have been hard pressed to replicate with any true resemblance to 'the real thing'. In fact the engineered varieties - especially the less than expensive ones,  can even cause me to make me a tad nauseous- re-enforcing my belief that Mother Nature truly is the most remarkable of artists.

I tend to remember things by scent and I have a rather sensitive sense of smell. A scent can make me remember an image, or feeling, long buried in the aging recesses of my brain. Scents can evoke my Uncle's garden, the willow tree that I used to sit in that hung over the Hudson river, my mother, my grandmother - you get the idea - I am plugged into the olfactory senses! I have worn the same perfume for 27 years. I think I have melded with it!

How about you? Do scents make you vividly recall people, places and things? What smells like Heaven to you? Hope your Thursday is filled with sunshine and a whiff of Heaven on earth!


Stacy Hurt said...

so what perfume do you wear?

sandra wyman said...

Love Lily of the Valley - mine unfortunately gave up the ghost, but the lilacs are in bud (froth of white lilac) and there are bluebells (the English variety) under the tree. Favourite smells - mown grass (a classic), new-mown hay and cat-fur when they have been outdoors (reminds me - must get Django in; he insisted on going out even though it's raining - and the smell ad touch of wet cat-fur is not one of my favourites!)

Deb said...

I think about this phenomenon often. As I came out of the office last night the jasmine and pines were just tinging the air after a few days of heavy rain. These are everyday smells, though, with no roots in memory or childhood. Still, I notice them.

Your post made me homesick. Lilacs and lily of the valley both. The willows, the lake, when all other senses fail, smells will take me back in place and time.

What is your fragrance? I have been stuck in "Pleasure" for over a decade and have the need to discover something new.

Jeannie said...

I have a couple of patches of lily of the valley and since they are in different microclimates in the yard, I have been enjoying the scent for a couple of weeks. Saddly, the lilacs are done. Wild roses remind me of walks along the river near Snohomish with my Gram and taking bouqets of the roses and Lily of the Valley to my Great Gram. They are remind me of home. Have a great weekend!

Jeannie said...

How's Smudge/Tillie?

ANNA said...

I too love lilac and lilly of hte valley - I grow both in my garden in memory of my gradmother who had loads in her garden. My lilly of hte valley are almost in blume

Fibreartist said...

I so agree, Marie, about remembering by scent! I can feel spring by its smell, wet, musky, green scent! Summer just isn't summer unless I can smell sweet hay in the fields from my childhood on the farm. My birthday is also this month, I have some lilies of the valley at the cottage. My birthday is very close to Victoria Day, a holiday. As a kid I think I believe the holiday was for my birthday! Such a thoughtful blog entry!

WildmanDesigns said...

Wonderful post, Marie! Yes, the sense of smell is an amazing enigma. I love the way certain smells immediately transport me back in time to a certain person, place or event! I can't tell you how many times I've been walking through a store and passed someone wearing "White Shoulders" (I think that's the name) and I'm immediately 5 years old, staying overnight at my aunt's house while my mom was in the hospital having my sister. And my aunt is comforting me because I miss my parents.

But my favorite smells are those in nature. There is nothing better than the smell of pines on a mountain trail, especially when the sun has heated the needles on the forest floor. Then I think of my Dad, who passed away in '92, because this was his favorite smell.

And the smell of the forest after the rain.

And the smell of fresh air flowing through the house after a long winter with the windows sealed shut.

And the smell of "the lake" (Michigan) as I come to the crest of a dune.

The list goes on and on. Thanks for bringing this to mind. :-)

Kate said...

We had a patch of lilies-of-the-valley next to our house when I was growing up, and the scent immediately takes me back there. I'll have to try to grow some in my yard.

And lilacs -- heaven-on-earth! I'm convinced that we only get to enjoy them for a couple of weeks a year because if we had them around longer, we'd all be drunk with joy!

Dianne said...

lovely photos...a reminder of the fragrance of spring! thanks for stopping by my are a most welcome visitor. you have wonderful digital art, too.

Edzellinni said...

omg, I looooove them too! memories of childhood and a magical side garden that was neglected, but those little bells came up every year and smelled so heavenly. makes me feel five again just seeing them.

Lynn Douglass said...

Yup, my sense of smell is quite keen! To smell lilacs takes me right back to being in kindergarten. My best friend and first crush lived across the street. We'd spend hours sitting under the huge lilac bushes, playing with Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head. lol. Gardenias bring back my mother, who wore White Shoulders perfume. For some reason, when I smell this fragrance, I always think of a pink stone jewelry box that sat on her dresser. My sister and I loved to explore that beautiful box, and her perfume bottle was next to it. Funny that I can't think of one item without the other. The smell of fresh cut lumber always brings my father to me. He had a wood shop in the garage, and it seemed that he was always cutting on something. I'd wake up at night and here the sound of his saw, and I'd instantly feel safe. He'd cut, I'd sand. The last project we worked on together, I was doing the cutting, and he was doing the sanding. He found that very amusing.

I didn't mean to write a novel, but this post really struck a chord with me. I've enjoyed my little trip down memory lane!

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