Lucky me! I received two assignments from students in my Natural Perfumery Institute perfumery course recently, and I just loved the poetry they wrote to describe their experiences with the module’s topic. Both poems are very different, as different as the authors, one from Ghana, the other from Canada. I post the second one in a few weeks, and maybe they’ll inspire you to write some poems about perfume. I am not a poet, so I really admire these talented students!
29 June, 2013
Poem describing some Observations on Aromatic Groups
and Differences between Aromatic Groups and Fragrance Families
How do I describe an aromatic group in one word,
When there is so much going on in there,
I thought it would be easy,
But then I was kind of wrong.
I thought all WOODS would smell woody,
That all FLORALS would smell sweet,
That all GREENS would smell like fresh green leaves,
And GOURMANDS smell good enough to eat.
But not all WOODS smelled woody,
Not all FLORALS smelled really sweet,
And GREENS could smell sweet, earthy, spicy,
And GOURMAND Butter CO2 smelled too smelly to eat!
I found that aromatics in the same group,
Could be like siblings in a family,
Similar in some organoleptic respects,
But with traits imparting unique identity.
Take the CITRUS group for instance,
A citrus smells like citrus, case closed?
But wait, petigrain was dry and bitter,
And yellow mandarin floral and sweet.
Now check out the ROSE family,
I thought a rose is a rose is a rose,
Then I found geranium smells nothing like rose de mai,
Or was it just my nose?
Next came the almighty FLORALS,
Should have known you divas would differ so,
Yes you all smell quite sweet, some of you heavy, narcotic and strong,
But you all scream hey look what else I’ve got!
Tuberose says “I’m spicy”!
Jasmine “I’m green and sultry”!
Champaca says “I’m savory you see”!
Orris boasts earthy, dry notes,
Orange blossom, a beer note,
And Cassie whispers “clean shower fresh smell is me”!
Voila! the heavyweight EARTH group,
All base notes, heavy, musty and damp,
They also displayed, their unique wares in an array,
Of smoky, herbal, animalic and oil.
So back to my attempt to describe,
An aromatic group in one word,
I have learnt that I need more than one word you see,
And honestly that is fine with me.
Oh, just one more thing I’d like to share,
The distinction ‘tween aromatic groups and fragrance families,
An aromatic group is one of many building blocks,
Used to create members of a fragrance family.
So while aromatic group FLORAL contains only florals,
And aromatic group WOODY only woods,
A member of fragrance group FLORAL could consist of
A mélange of woods, florals and citruses.
These are just a few observations I made,
In my study of aromatic groups,
I have so much to say, not enough space to write,
So I’ll just end here and say goodnight!
Aba Williams is a Ghanaian from Saltpond, a town in the Central Region of Ghana. She has a background in Chemistry, Biochemistry, Food Science, Agribusiness and Rural Development. She discovered natural perfumery in 2007 while researching on aromatherapy. She has since developed a keen interest in and love for natural aromatics and the art of perfumery. She is a member of the Natural Perfumers Guild and is currently enrolled in the Basic Perfumery Course of the Natural Perfumery Institute. Her vision is to establish a fragrance studio in Ghana providing natural fragrances for use in perfumes, food, environmental scenting and more.
Besides being fun to read, there are some real educational points Aba makes. Are you inspired by this lighthearted poem? Did you learn a lot?