Read More, Smell More!

My dear friend, the scent expert, Nicola, often shares stories of what he sees around him on his travels and reminds me to look for beauty in unexpected places.

So when I saw this work of graffiti in NYC a few weeks ago, I not only chuckled at its fun message, but I immediately thought of him.

IMG_1203I sent Nicola the photo and asked him if the graffiti inspired him in any way, would he be generous enough to write something for my blog, and lucky for me, it did!

from Nicola:

Girl, smell more
And the world will unfold.

Smell the brown,
Your day can be more round.

Smell the yellow,
Feel the joy, let it be your fellow.

Smell the green,
Freedom, that’s what it means.

Smell the white,
Flowers by day, love by night.

Smell the blue,
The sea is yours, but he is… who?

Girl, smell more
And the world will unfold.


THANK YOU, Nicola! Sei un tesoro!

So, let’s all read more, smell more, inspire and be inspired!

Check out Nicola’s blog here:

64 thoughts on “Read More, Smell More!

  1. Great poem and reminder to read and smell more! It’s funny how a lot of books don’t describe the sense of smell very often, but when they do it really helps to put the reader in that place.

    • You’re right, Sheila, I’m trying to think of memorable passages from my favorite books that describe particular smells, but not a lot are coming to mind. That’s quite interesting. But whenever a smell is described, it does create a more personal moment almost immediately due to the strong link between smell and memory, so true.

  2. This is fantastic! We think that we see or read with only our eyes. I got goosebumps reading this poem. Reminded me to open all of my senses to the possibilities that are waiting for me!!!

  3. My son won’t eat something if it doesn’t “smell right” to him. I call him a “super smeller” the way oenophiles can be super tasters.

    And certain scents take me out of my body and send me into the past. Hay. Manure. Wool. The cats. My grandfather’s tool shed. Eucalyptus. Warm pine needles. Oh, so many.

    • That’s wonderful that your son is a super smeller, and therefore, a super taster. Perhaps he will grow up to be a perfumer or a chef!

      I love your list of scents that take you back – it made me think of what my own list would be. Your grandfather’s tool shed made me think of my grandfather’s pipe tobacco.

    • We’re lucky when we can be surrounded by creative friends as they encourage us in our own creativity.

      I’ve always admired your stories and your photography as I’ve read and seen them through your blog so I know you understand 🙂

    • That’s the great thing about reading, there are always more books to read!

      But I guess sometimes we need to put the book down and dust the bookshelves 😉

    • Thanks, Lynne! Yes, we so often take it for granted. I’m sure in your fun travels you’ve come across some wonderful (and perhaps some terrible) odors!

  4. Oh my I love this, your friend is so talented, what a lovely poem, this post has all the things I love.
    Certain books make us aware of our surroundings, and make us smell too. I pin it to my Pinterest hope you do not mind.

    • Thank you!

      I was so excited when I saw that graffiti- what a fun and original thing to write!

      I was thinking of your blog yesterday- hope the little baby birds are doing well!

      • i guess you want me to check on them. *sigh* their mama really scared me. she didn’t like it if i got near her babies. i might need a helmet 🙂 wish me luck.

          • too late. I already went to the bushes and checked on their nest. the good news is i’m still alive 🙂 the bad news is i found the nest emptied 😦 ah well… i love your shot and the poem! i’ve said it before, haven’t i?!

            • I am glad to hear that you are alive! Perhaps, if the nest is empty, the little birds have already flown away. That’s what I will imagine as that is a nicer image than the alternative!

    • I was so excited, Dianne, and I love imagining the graffiti artist hanging off the rooftop to paint, not his/her name nor his/her declaration of love to another, but a command to read more books!

  5. Wow, what vitality and fun ! Great poem Letizia… smell is the oldest sense we have, isn’t it,? Something to do with our reptilian brain?… it seems to triggers such old deep memories of things we ‘ve long forgotten…

    • Yes, I think it’s situated in the oldest, earliest part of our brain – it’s such a fascinating sense.

      (V- I’ve gotten behind in reading your posts and I saw you have one on reading in bed, can’t wait to read it!).

  6. Lately, when I have settled down to read at night I have had some lavender essences under my pillow and on my bedside table with my books. It is delightful to read in a haze of lavender but it also makes me fall asleep before I have read more than a few pages 😀

  7. Combined the two and smell the books you read, there is a whole new olfactory world to be experienced and it makes me happy to get the scent of a good book around myself….and that’s nothing to be sniffed at!

    • It’s such a great message, isn’t it? And I love the image of a bibliophile scaling the walls to paint his/her message on the building – it makes me laugh, it’s so unexpected!

  8. graffiti is perhaps the free writing expression, the free verse at the realm of any poem. Thanks for share so lovely post. Street art and art at streets…free writing…frees living…alive verse.

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