One has just been sent out as a biblical dove, has found nothing green, and slips back
into the darkness of the ark -- Kafka

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Baudelairian "Clips"

From Paris Spleen:

Life is a hospital, in which every patient is possessed by the desire of changing his bed. One would prefer to suffer near the fire, and another is certain that he would get well if he were by the window.

It seems to me that I should always be happy if I were somewhere else, and this question of moving house is one that I am continually talking over with my soul.


Two poems (from Knopf's Everyman's -- my breaks):

Flesh is willing, but the Soul requires
Sisyphean patience for its song.
Time, Hippocrates remarked, is short
and Art is long.
No illustrious tombstones ornament
the lonely churchyard where I often go
to hear my heart, a muffled drum,
parade incognito.
‘Many a gem,’ the poet mourns, abides
forgotten in the dust,
unnoticed there;
‘many a rose’ regretfully confides
the secret of its scent
to empty air.

I have not forgotten the house we lived in then,  
it was just outside of town, a little white house
in a skimpy grove that hid the naked limbs  
of plaster goddesses – the Venus was chipped!  
Nor those seemingly endless evenings when the sun 
(whose rays ignited every windowpane) seemed,  
like a wide eye in the wondering sky, 
to contemplate our long silent meals,  
kindling more richly than any candlelight 
the cheap curtains and the much-laundered cloth.



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