by Lady Carlton née Katie O’Roarke, heroine of “The Blonde Samurai”
As the cold days linger and the frost bites at my nose like an unhappy hummingbird, I am oft reminded that the smells of this season–soot and the burning of firewood–make the coming of spring an ever so joyful occurrence with its fragrant scents.
Rose, jasmine, lavender.
Delightful scents that the geisha and courtesans use in their unique, charming manner since these artistic ladies do not use perfume in the manner you do. They apply scent to the air (incense sticks in redolent smells such as sandalwood and cinnamon) or to the many layers of their silken robes or kimono. They consider it most important that their scent lingers in the mind of the gentleman once he has taken leave of their futon.
I am reminded of the young geisha I met in the pleasure quarters of Yoshiwara named Simouyé *** and how she used scent to entertain the customer with her art before the courtesan made her appearance. A geisha owns many kimono, each one sumptuous and silky and painted with original patterns in the most vibrant colors, but it is the scent of the geisha that makes a gentleman catch his breath and yearn to take her in his arms.
How is this possible?
Scent affects a gentleman’s mood, evoking a reaction to a smell even before he identifies it, sparking sensual memories with a memorable woman.
Such as you, dear lady reader.
If I may do so, I shall pen my thoughts about scent so you may use them the next time you wish to seduce your husband or your lover (though rarely are they one and the same in the boudoirs of Mayfair) and send him adrift in a magical dream where you are the lead player.
1. The wise goddess of nature infuses flowers with potent, seductive scents (the world of geisha is called the “flowers and willows world). A drop of an essential oil is all you need. No more. Even if you can’t smell it late in the evening after you return from a soiree, he can.
2. Warm weather enhances your scent, begging that you be judicious during the Season in applying scent to your skin. Honeysuckle and jasmine are soft fragrances best worn for tea at Brown’s, but for evenings (especially when you wish to be mysterious and are attending a masked ball), a heavy, musky scent can be most seductive.
3. A favorite scent of mine–lavender–reduces stress and can help you relax when your household is in disorder (has your husband been chasing after your new ladies maid again?) as well as relieve anxiety and promote a sense of well-being. Though you may be more inclined to look for a new maid to regain your good nature.
4. Oriental fragrances are all the rage with their powdery, sensual, bewitching scent. Be daring and shed your inhibitions in the boudoir. Do as the courtesan does and undress slowly in front of your husband or lover and not behind a pearl-inlayed screen, the scent of an oriental paradise wafting in the air and seducing him as he watches you.
5. I am aware that many of you dab scent behind your earlobes. No geisha would do so nor should you. She is aware that the skin in that area produces an oil that affects the scent. Instead, rub scent behind your knees since scent rises.
I shall leave you with a final thought about fragrance: though it may be considered unladylike to apply scent between your breasts, what with the current rage of low décolletage in gowns so popular among ladies of the upper class, is there not a more desirable place for his lordship to bury his nose?
February 2010: meet The Blonde Samurai
“She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.”