Cretan afternoon………GREY FLANNEL by GEOFFREY BEENE (1976)

The Black Narcissus


















My brother was fifteen; I was seventeen, our first time in Greece. In the white villa we lounged among the sheets, the scent of eucalyptus in the afternoon outside, sun flickering the walls like lizards.


I had got some perfume samples, just before we left, of a bewilderingly green men’s scent with the smell of frozen green beans and violet leaves, and it seemed to us at the time unwearable. Instead, we used the vials as cooling agents in that searing heat, flicked them at sheets and the walls, a beautiful, aromatic green that intensified the brush outside.  


Quite obscure now but still available, I didn’t smell this scent for twenty years until my grandfather’s funeral, when my cousin Dominic, who was sitting in the pew in front, had a gentle soap/wood scent that was…

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