By Charles Baudelaire

Among 1855 and his demise in 1867, Charles Baudelaire inaugurated a new?and in his personal phrases "dangerous"?hybrid shape in a chain of prose poems often called Paris Spleen. vital and provocative, those fifty poems take the reader on a journey of 1850s Paris, via sparkling cafes and filthy part streets, revealing a city at the eve of serious switch. In its planned fragmentation and merging of the lyrical with the sardonic, Le Spleen de Paris might be considered as one of many earliest and such a lot profitable examples of a in particular city writing, the textual an identical of town scenes of the Impressionists. during this compelling new translation, Keith Waldrop can provide the significant other to his leading edge translation of The plant life of Evil. right here, Waldrop's completely modulated combine releases the song, depth, and dissonance in Baudelaire's prose. the result's a robust new re-imagining that's in the direction of Baudelaire's personal poetry than any prior English translation.

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Extra resources for Paris Spleen: Little Poems in Prose (Wesleyan Poetry Series)

Example text

Minute by minute. 24 too near the slaughterhouse I live too near the slaughterhouse. what do you expect? silver blood like Chatterton’s? the dankness of my hours allows no practiced foresight. I hear the branches snap and break like ravens in a quarrel, and see my mother in her coffin not moving quietly not moving as I light a cigarette or drink a glass of water or do anything ignominious. what do you want? that I should feel deceived? ) I say let the monkeys dance, let the monkeys dance in the light of God.

I sit here drunk now. I am a series of small victories and large defeats and I am as amazed as any other that I have gotten from there to here without committing murder or being murdered; without having ended up in the madhouse. 50 as I drink alone again tonight my soul despite all the past agony thanks all the gods who were not there for me then. 51 the dwarf with a punch this is many years later and I still can’t figure it out but it was in New York and New York has its own rules and anyhow, I am sitting around in one of those places with many round tables with their tough and terrible knights; me, I don’t feel so good, as usual, neither tough nor terrible, just rotten, and I am sitting with some woman with some kind of hood over her head, she is half crazy but that doesn’t matter.

There was nothing back in that room but a week’s paid rent plus a battered 28 suitcase full of my old clothes but it was everything I possessed so I began searching the side streets looking for my room and I soon became frightened, a numb terror like a fatal illness spreading through me as I kept walking up and down unfamiliar streets until my mind said to me: you’re crazy, that’s all, you should give up and turn yourself in somewhere. but I just kept walking. it had been a long afternoon and now it was slipping into evening.

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