Smell Quotes

The house smelled musty and damp, and a little sweet, as if it were haunted by the ghosts of long-dead cookies.

American Gods

Neil Gaiman

American Gods
Cookies    Descriptions    Ghosts    Humor    Scent    Setting    Smell

At no other time (than autumn) does the earth let itself be inhaled in one smell, the ripe earth; in a smell that is in no way inferior to the smell of the sea, bitter where it borders on taste, and more honeysweet where you feel it touching the first sounds. Containing depth within itself, darkness, something of the grave almost.

Briefe über Cézanne

Rainer Maria Rilke

Briefe über Cézanne
Aroma    Autumn    Fall    Scent    Seasons    Smell

Even so, there were times I saw freshness and beauty. I could smell the air, and I really loved rock 'n' roll. Tears were warm, and girls were beautiful, like dreams. I liked movie theaters, the darkness and intimacy, and I liked the deep, sad summer nights.

Beauty    Darkness    Freshness    Girls    Intimacy    Movie theatres    Music    Rock and roll    Sadness    Smell    Summer    Summer nights    Tears

And now I've got to explain the smell that was in there before I went in there. Does that ever happen to you? It's not your fault. You've held your breath, you just wanna get out, and now you open the door and you have to explain, 'Oh! Listen, there's an odor in there and I didn't do it. It's bad.

Bathroom    Embarrassment    Odor    Scent    Smell    Stink

Each day has a color, a smell.

The Mistress of Spices

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

The Mistress of Spices
Aroma    Calendar    Color    Day    Odor    Smell

The library was a little old shabby place. Francie thought it was beautiful. The feeling she had about it was as good as the feeling she had about church. She pushed open the door and went in. She liked the combined smell of worn leather bindings, library past and freshly inked stamping pads better than she liked the smell of burning incense at high mass.

Bookish    Books    Experience    Feelings    Library    Mood    Read    Reading    Smell

Louisiana in September was like an obscene phone call from nature. The air--moist, sultry, secretive, and far from fresh--felt as if it were being exhaled into one's face. Sometimes it even sounded like heavy breathing. Honeysuckle, swamp flowers, magnolia, and the mystery smell of the river scented the atmosphere, amplifying the intrusion of organic sleaze. It was aphrodisiac and repressive, soft and violent at the same time. In New Orleans, in the French Quarter, miles from the barking lungs of alligators, the air maintained this quality of breath, although here it acquired a tinge of metallic halitosis, due to fumes expelled by tourist buses, trucks delivering Dixie beer, and, on Decatur Street, a mass-transit motor coach named Desire.

Smell is a potent wizard that transports you across thousands of miles and all the years you have lived. The odors of fruits waft me to my southern home, to my childhood frolics in the peach orchard. Other odors, instantaneous and fleeting, cause my heart to dilate joyously or contract with remembered grief. Even as I think of smells, my nose is full of scents that start awake sweet memories of summers gone and ripening fields far away.

When nothing else subsists from the past, after the people are dead, after the things are broken and scattered...the smell and taste of things remain poised a long time, like souls...bearing resiliently, on tiny and almost impalpable drops of their essence, the immense edifice of memory

He had preserved the best part of her and made it his own: the principle of her scent.

Smell is important. It reminds a person of all the things he's been through; it is a sheath of memories and security.

To-day I think
Only with scents, - scents dead leaves yield,
And bracken, and wild carrot's seed,
And the square mustard field;
Odours that rise
When the spade wounds the root of tree,
Rose, currant, raspberry, or goutweed,
Rhubarb or celery;
The smoke's smell, too,
Flowing from where a bonfire burns
The dead, the waste, the dangerous,
And all to sweetness turns.
It is enough
To smell, to crumble the dark earth,
While the robin sings over again
Sad songs of Autumn mirth."
- A poem called DIGGING.

Collected Poems

Edward Thomas

Collected Poems
Autumn    Digging    Gardening    Odours    Scents    Smell    Soil

I miss your fragrance, sometimes I miss it this much that I can clearly smell you in the air.

Air    Fragrance    Smell

This morning, Tegus welcomed me again with an arm clasp and cheek touch. I wasn't startled this time, and I breathed in at his neck. How can I describe the scent of his skin? He smells something like cinnamon-- brown and dry and sweet and warm. Ancestors, is it wrong for me to imagine laying my head on his chest and closing my eyes and breathing in his smell?

Hear, hear," said the Dog, raising her head. "It's always better to be doing, Prince. Besides, you don't smell like a coward, so you can't be one.


Garth Nix


I wish we could see perfumes as well as smell them. I'm sure they would be very beautiful.

Anne of the Island

L.M. Montgomery

Anne of the Island

I still love the book-ness of books, the smell of books: I am a book fetishist—books to me are the coolest and sexiest and most wonderful things there are.

Books    Reading    Sexy    Smell    Wonderful

I drive a motorbike, so there is the whiff of the grim reaper round every corner, especially in London.

Corner    Danger    Death    Driving    Grim reaper    London    Motorbike    Smell

I hope that while so many people are out smelling the flowers, someone is taking the time to plant some.

Flowers    Plant    Smell

Who are you, Martin Eden? he demanded of himself in the looking-
glass, that night when he got back to his room. He gazed at
himself long and curiously. Who are you? What are you? Where do
you belong? You belong by rights to girls like Lizzie Connolly.
You belong with the legions of toil, with all that is low, and
vulgar, and unbeautiful. You belong with the oxen and the drudges,
in dirty surroundings among smells and stenches. There are the
stale vegetables now. Those potatoes are rotting. Smell them,
damn you, smell them. And yet you dare to open the books, to
listen to beautiful music, to learn to love beautiful paintings, to
speak good English, to think thoughts that none of your own kind
thinks, to tear yourself away from the oxen and the Lizzie
Connollys and to love a pale spirit of a woman who is a million
miles beyond you and who lives in the stars! Who are you? and what
are you? damn you! And are you going to make good?

Love    Music    Painting    Smell

Y’all might as well come on out, I said. I know you’re there. I can smell you.
Smell me? But I just took a shower this morning! an indignant voice drifted out of the shadows.
There was a loud sound, like someone was getting smacked upside the head. Then another voice let out a low mutter.
Shut up, idiot.

Assassin    Billy    Bobby    Funny    Gin blanco    Humor    Idiots    Smell

But, when nothing subsists of an old past, after the death of people, after the destruction of things, alone, frailer but more enduring, more immaterial, more persistent, more faithful, smell and taste still remain for a long time, like souls, remembering, waiting, hoping, on the ruin of all the rest, bearing without giving way, on their almost impalpable droplet, the immense edifice of memory.

Memory    Smell    Taste

Masculine exhalations are, as a rule, stronger, more vivid,more widely differentiated than those of women. In the odor of young men there is something elemental, as of fire, storm, and salt sea. It pulsates with buoyancy and desire. It suggests all the things strong and beautiful and joyous and gives me a sense of physical happiness.

Men    Smell

As soon as I got into the library I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. I got a whiff of the leather on all the old books, a smell that got real strong if you picked one of them up and stuck your nose real close to it when you turned the pages. Then there was the the smell of the cloth that covered the brand-new books, books that made a splitting sound when you opened them. Then I could sniff the the paper, that soft, powdery, drowsy smell that comes off the page in little puffs when you're reading something or looking at some pictures, kind of hypnotizing smell.
I think it's the smell that makes so many folks fall asleep in the library. You'll see someone turn a page and you can imagine a puff of page powder coming up real slow and easy until it starts piling on a person's eyelashes, weighing their eyes down so much they stay down a little longer after each blink and finally making them so heavy that they just don't come back up at all. Then their mouths open and their heads start bouncing up and down like they're bobbing in a big tub of of water for apples and before you know it... they're out cold and their face thunks smack-dab on the book.
That's the part that makes librarians the maddest. They get real upset if folks start drooling in the books

Bud, Not Buddy

Christopher Paul Curtis

Bud, Not Buddy

It was her first book, an indigo cover with a silver moonflower, an art nouveau flower, I traced my finger along the silver line like smoke, whiplash curves. ... I touched the pages her hands touched, I pressed them to my lips, the soft thick old paper, yellow now, fragile as skin. I stuck my nose between the bindings and smelled all the readings she had given, the smell of unfiltered cigarettes and the espresso machine, beaches and incense and whispered words in the night. I could hear her voice rising from the pages. The cover curled outward like sails.

White Oleander

Janet Fitch

White Oleander
Imagery    Silver    Smell    Wanting

He methodically basted the dark skin of the Alsatian, which he had stuffed with garlic and herbs.
"One rule in life", he murmured to himself. "If you can smell garlic, everything is all right".


J.G. Ballard

Ballard    Dinner    Dog    Dog meat    Dogs    Garlic    J g ballard    James graham ballard    Jg ballard    Life    Madness    Smell    Taboo

He wraps his arms around me and holds me tight for a few seconds. His
breaths tickle my ear, and I close my eyes, letting myself finally relax. He
smells like wind and sweat and soap, like Tobias and like safety.


Veronica Roth

Allegiant    Couple    Divergent 3    Divergent series    Love    Safety    Smell    Tobias    Tris    Wind

Waking up to a smell is a lot more satisfying than waking up to a noise. Instead of barging in uninvited and yanking you out into reality, smells enter your dreams with a silent knock and a polite "Excuse me?

Tonight I can smell the season the way it's usually only possible to at the very first moments of its return, before you're used to it, when you've forgotten its smell, then there it is back in the air and the flow of things shifting and resettling again.

First days    Flashback    Memory    Season    Smell

He had used only a drop of his perfume for his performance in Grasse. There was enough left to enslave the whole world. If he wanted, he could be feted in Paris, not by tens of thousands, but by hundreds of thousands of people; or could walk out to Versailles and have the King kiss his feet; write the Pope a perfumed letter and reveal himself as the new Messiah; be anointed in Notre-Dame as Supreme Emperor before kings, or even as God come to earth.

Perfume    Power    Scent    Smell

I´ve read that it´s the smell some carnivores use to find their prey. Imagine the trembling victim trying to hide, but knowing that the smell of its own fear will kill it.

Fear    Harry hole    Jo nesbø    Prey    Smell    The snowman    Victim

Smells, I think, may be the last thing on earth to die.

Earth    Memory    Scent    Smell

But a smell shivered him awake.
It was a scent as old as the world. It was a hundred aromas of a thousand places. It was the tang of pine needles. It was the musk of sex. It was the muscular rot of mushrooms. It was the spice of oak. Meaty and redolent of soil and bark and herb. It was bats and husks and burrows and moss. It was solid and alive - so alive! And it was close.
The vapors invaded Nicholas' nostrils and his hair rose to their roots. His eyes were as heavy as manhole covers, but he opened them. Through the dying calm inside him snaked a tremble of fear.
The trees themselves seemed tense, waiting. The moonlight was a hard shell, sharp and ready to ready be struck and to ring like steel.
A shadow moved.
It poured like oil from between the tall trees and flowed across dark sandy dirt, lengthening into the middle of the ring. Trees seem to bend toward it, spellbound. A long, long shadow...

Ancient    Fear    Forest    Green man    Hair standing on end    Magic    Odor    Old god    Primal    Semiconscious    Smell    Supernatural    Visitation

No matter how sweet is smells, if you know it will give you a discomfort later, don't even attempt to taste it. Discipline yourself to stay out of sin!

Smells could bring a person back clearer than pictures even could.

Vinegar: that's what fear smells like.

Fear    Smell    Vinegar

I emitted some civetlike female stink, a distinct perfume of sexual wanting, that he had followed to find me here in the dark.

White Oleander

Janet Fitch

White Oleander
Sexual    Smell    Wanting

I hover over the expensive Scotch and then the Armagnac, but finally settle on a glass of rich red claret. I put it near my nose and nearly pass out. It smells of old houses and aged wood and dark secrets, but also of hard, hot sunshine through ancient shutters and long, wicked afternoons in a four-poster bed. It's not a wine, it's a life, right there in the glass.

The Gone-Away World

Nick Harkaway

The Gone-Away World
Claret    Smell    Wine

Virtually drowning in himself, he could not for the life of him smell himself.

And the awful thing was that Grenouille, although he knew that this odour was his odour, could not smell it. Virtually drowning in himself, he could not for the life of him smell himself!

Drowning    Odour    Perfume    Smell

Nel sole di marzo, mentre era seduto su una catasta di ceppi di faggio che scricchiolavano per il caldo, avvenne che egli pronunciasse per la prima volta la parola «legno». Aveva già visto il legno centinaia di volte, aveva sentito la parola centinaia di volte. La capiva anche, infatti d'inverno era stato mandato fuori spesso a prendere legna. Ma il legno come oggetto non gli era mai sembrato così interessante da darsi la pena di pronunciarne il nome. Ciò avvenne soltanto quel giorno di marzo, mentre era seduto sulla catasta. La catasta era ammucchiata a strati, come una panca, sul lato sud del capannone di Madame Gaillard, sotto un tetto sporgente. I ceppi più alti emanavano un odore dolce di bruciaticcio, dal fondo della catasta saliva un profumo di muschio, e dalla parete d'abete del capannone si diffondeva nel tepore un profumo di resina sbriciolata.
Grenouille era seduto sulla catasta con le gambe allungate, la schiena appoggiata contro la parete del capannone, aveva chiuso gli occhi e non si muoveva. Non vedeva nulla, non sentiva e non provava nulla. Si limitava soltanto ad annusare il profumo del legno che saliva attorno a lui e stagnava sotto il tetto come sotto una cappa. Bevve questo profumo, vi annegò dentro, se ne impregnò fino all'ultimo e al più interno dei pori, divenne legno lui stesso, giacque sulla catasta come un pupazzo di legno, come un Pinocchio, come morto, finché dopo lungo tempo, forse non prima di una mezz’ora, pronunciò a fatica la parola «legno». Come se si fosse riempito di legno fin sopra le orecchie, come se il legno gli arrivasse già fino al collo, come se avesse il ventre, la gola, il naso traboccanti di legno, così vomitò fuori la parola. E questa lo riportò in sé, lo salvò, poco prima che la presenza schiacciante del legno, con il suo profumo, potesse soffocarlo. Si alzò a fatica, scivolò giù dalla catasta, e si allontanò vacillando come su gambe di legno. Per giorni e giorni fu preso totalmente dall'intensa esperienza olfattiva, e quando il ricordo saliva in lui con troppa prepotenza, borbottava fra sé e sé «legno, legno», a mo' di scongiuro.

Smell    Wood

There was a sound you could smell / like you were inhaling tomorrow.

Poetry    Smell    Sound    Tomorrow

Fish is the only food that is considered spoiled once it smells like what it is.

Consideration    Fish    Food    Smell    Spoiled

My nose remembers more than my eyes. The sharp oily smell of eucalyptus combines with afternoon dust from the hockey field. But my heart feels the different then and now.

Heart    Nose    Scent    Smell

In those days you could identify a person's nationality by smell. Lying on her back with eyes closed, Desdemona could detect the telltale oniony aroma of a Hungarian woman on her right, and the raw-meat smell of an Armenian on her left. (And they, in turn, could peg Desdemona as a Hellene by her aroma of garlic and yogurt.)


Jeffrey Eugenides


I followed Barry closely as we walked through the main doors of the hospital, down the corridor that smelt like disinfectant and false hope.

You skin is so soft. Smells like…

She had to tilt him to get this other arm free and hated knowing how badly she was hurting him as she did so. Sheer, unadulterated fear?

Fear    Skin    Smell

I get out of the car, and I'm blasted by the stench of body odor. Cricket is beside me, and he's talking, but his words don't reach my ears.
Because it's my mother.
On my porch.

Humor    Mother    Smell

She liked the sharp salty smell of the air, and the vastness of horizons bounded only by a vault of azure sky above.

Azure    Salt    Sea    Sky    Smell    Vault

Smell her neck, bite her ear, touch her hairs and make her giggle; and she won’t forget you ever.

Bite    Forget    Giggle    Hairs    Neck    Smell    Touch


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