Sunday, April 8, 2012
still-sound 57. Night scented
I wish you could smell these datura flowers. They hang like witches' hats in front of my neighbor's house and emit a sweet floral perfume in the evening. The scent trails down the street and lures you in. The flowers and leaves themselves are highly toxic. I read that every year there are fatalities from datura poisoning, mostly intentional. Datura belongs to the moonlit world of deadly night shade, mandrake and belladonna. The working materials of a witch.
On the album Never Forever, Kate Bush sings a song titled Night Scented Stock. The album was released in 1980, four years after a the British perfumery Penhaligons introduced a new fragrance with the very same name. The song itself is wordless. Kate's voice is the only instrument, layered and polytonal like a chorus. The song begins with a quiet, beckoning melody and eventually builds into a final, protracted, dissonant chord. It's a Pre-Raphealite fantasy of a nocturnal English garden ... of longing, beauty and peril.