Soaping fabulously 2

Here’s part 2 of my Year of Soaping Fabulously … read the earlier review here.

Ginger & Lime Luxury Soap is billed as “naturally European and “savon de luxe” on the cellophane wrapper – made in Portugal with the company based in England (the eccentric-sounding Chew Magna which may, or may not, be near Chew Bacca!). The website listed on the wrapper has been “parked” (ie, it no longer works, but the above link will take you to some information).

I bought this from a Life Pharmacy, attracted by the light but invigorating scent that was apparent through the wrapper and knowing that Haiku Husband loooves ginger so figured it would at least appeal to him (I’m not such a fan of the root spice).

But I fell in love with it as soon as I used it. The soap retained its delightfully zingy scent almost to the end and was a pleasure to use – although as always with larger bars my little hands have problems holding on to start with. The bar was sudsy without feeling like it was leaving a film on my skin and despite having a long list of ingredients, only a few are unpronounceable so maybe the “natural” appellation isn’t too far off. It contains ginger (extract and oil), lime (extract and oil) and extracts of lemon, orange, mandarin, plus poppy seeds, the last being well distributed right through the bar for a bit of gentle exfoliation.
Cost: $12.99 for 230g. Rating: 5 stars.

In the interests of sourcing my soaps far and wide for this survey, the next bar came from The Cargo Shed in Dive Crescent, Tauranga, a weekend arts and crafts market through the winter (more days in summer). I am assuming that the soap is made in the Tauranga area as the market is for locally-produced goods but there is no address on the label, apart from the name “Naturally Native Bath & Body Treats”.

Orange, Petitgrain & Calendula Cold Process Soap is, the label says, hand-made in New Zealand and uses no palm oil or animal products. The scent lasted well and small pieces of peel emerged on a regular basis (although peel isn’t listed on the label, only essential oils). The ridging on the top of the bar gave a kind of pleasant scrubbing effect. Again, it felt soapy without being filmy.

Petitgrain, in case you’re wondering (I was), is an essential oil extracted from the leaves of the bitter orange (Citrus aurantium). This plant is also known as the Seville orange, where the marmalade comes from. When I was much younger and in Seville I couldn’t work out why all the oranges were left on the street trees. So I pulled one down and tried a piece. Instantly, there was no saliva in my mouth and my face felt like was turning into a prune! Yep, it was bitter.
Cost: $6 for 110-130g. Rating 4 stars.

my mother’s breasts
we both giggle

– Joanna Preston, from the haibun “Shoulder Reconstruction”, winterSpin, 2000.

Read Joanna’s blog here, and more of her haiku here.


Haiku to suit the weather

                                    night birth a lamb shakes fluids into the sleet

– Pamela Brown, Haiku Presence Award 2009


on the axe-head
           the smell
out of kindling

– Geoffrey Daniel, Haiku Ancient & Modern (MQ Publications, 2002)


two-quilt night –
creak of the firebox
as we settle

– Sandra Simpson, The Heron’s Nest VII: 3 (2005)


along with wind and mud and whatever that means if anything

– Marlene Mountain, Haiku 21 (Modern Haiku Press, 2011)


4.56am, a gale outside

The heavy rain of the past 24 hours has turned into strong winds with rain still in the air – I woke at 3.30am and decided that, yes, the orchids hanging from the verandah eaves really needed to be taken down and put under cover. Back to bed but, despite my best efforts, not to sleep … so here I am.

Recently published work:

almost autumn              the hum of sunflowers

The Heron’s Nest, XVI: 2

                                                          winter the colour of a cow’s tongue

A Hundred Gourds, 3:3 (one of two haiku in the issue)

Recent award:

first autumn colour –
given the heirloom
meant for my sister

– Honourable Mention, Betty Drevniok Award (Canada)