Photo ©Chantal-Hélène Wagner
"It was risky for them to meet, but somehow, the laws of historicity made it happen one fine summer day.
She was as pink as the glow of a child's cheek puffed up by a big piece of gum the kid had been masticating assiduously for a few hours. Ah yes, to masticate...mastic gum....mastiha from Chios....hmmmm.....also a type of incense. In fact, let me rephrase this. Those were, in fact, not the laws of historicity that presided over their encounter but rather the laws of associative logic that made the seemingly unexpected meeting take place for better and worse, the scales tipping in one direction or the other according to the weather and the moods of the people who knew them.
No one really knows how it all started, to tell you the truth. But there it was one day with the full force of obviousness a fusion of the serious and solemn and the not-so-serious, a little bit like Charles and Diana in that period when Princess Diana had not yet revealed all the depth of her tormented soul and the ruins of her wrecked marriage to the public, and people thought she might have sold nylon stockings back in the days and looked a bit trashy. But this is not about those Royals. This is a different story whose uniqueness is reflected in the names of the protagonists.....
Did Frankincense - the name of her French lover - initiate? Did she come upon him with the explosive force of a bursting bubble of thought in a cartoon strip read at the breakfast table, one over-caffeinated morning in July?
At any rate, one day, sometimes in the summer when the air was fragrant with peaches and raspberries, it happened for real.
They collided into one another like a detached giant ferris wheel that would have run loose at a fun-fair and ended in the peaceful and welcoming arms of the church. I think their spiritual father, André Breton, would have sent an approving wink in their direction. He said beautiful things about the unprobable encounter of things.
She smelled different, that is for sure, everyone told him so. He liked her smell; her hair wafted candied sillages, her breath was slightly anisey, her neck, musky.
She thought he smelled like greyish smoky incense, and a bit medicinal. All in all it worked out for them, sort of. Some people thought, you know the type, that the contrast was a bit hard to stomach sometimes. Well, Frankincense et Bubblegum ended up setting up joint in the same bottle anyway. And let me say that they had a lot of fun.
They are also teaching the world a lesson: that chewing and praying might have more in common that we initially suspected, if you come to think of it. One day, they know, it will stop feeling like a monster pink gum was stuck irreverently on the church incense burner in full view of the praying community. People will finally understand - get-it.
Encens et Bubblegum by Etat Libre d'Orange was created by perfumer Antoine Maisondieu. The perfume contains notes of peach, raspberry, vanilla, lily of the valley, musk, essence and resinoïd of incense....
Photo ©The Scented Salamander