A gift from André Breton to Jean-Jacques Lebel, and possibly a reference to the unsettling short story “A Tress of Hair” by Guy Maupassant which contains the passage:
“... One evening, I realized, feeling the thickness of a panel, then there had to be a hiding place. My heart began to beat, and I spent the night looking for the secret without being able to discover. I succeeded the next day by sticking a knife into a slit of the woodwork. A board slipped and I saw, spread out on a black velvet background, a wonderful woman’s hair! Yes, a hair, a huge mat blond hair, almost red, which had to be cut against the skin, and bound by a golden cord. I was startled, trembling, confused! An almost imperceptible perfume, so old that it seemed the soul an odor, flew this mysterious drawer and this amazing relic ... “
Reed Enger, "Emma," in Obelisk Art History, Published March 04, 2015; last modified May 05, 2021, http://www.arthistoryproject.com/artists/andre-breton/emma/.