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First published posthumously in 1869, "Paris Spleen" is a collection of 51 short prose poems by Charles Baudelaire. Inspired by Aloysius Bertrand's "Gaspard de la Nuit - Fantaisies à la manière de Rembrandt et de Callot" or "Gaspard of the Night - Fantasies in the Manner of Rembrandt and Callot", Baudelaire remarked that he had read Bertrand's work at least twenty times for starting "Paris Spleen". A commentary on Parisian contemporary life, Baudelaire remarked on his work that "These are the flowers of evil again, but with more freedom, much more detail, and much more mockery." The themes present in "Paris Spleen" are wide-ranging. In a stream of consciousness style Baudelaire discusses pleasure, intoxication, artistry, women, poverty and social status, city life, religion, and morality. These little snapshots of daily life in the city of Paris capture the tumultuous time in which they were written, the middle of the 19th century, and establish "Paris Spleen" as a classic of the modernist literary movement.
heard. So with all my scorn I replied: “Away with you! I am not one to marry the mistress of a certain person I do not care to name.” Of such courageous self-denial I surely had the right to be proud. But unhappily when I awoke all my fortitude forsook me. “In truth,” I said to myself, “I must have been sound asleep indeed to have displayed such scruples. Ah! if only they would come again while I am awake, I would certainly not be so squeamish.” And I called on them aloud, begging them to
his proposition, like all unbelievers, with citations from the Church Fathers. I know that the wilderness is a favorite haunt of the Devil and that the Spirit of lubricity is kindled in lonely places. But it is possible that this solitude is dangerous only for those idle and vagrant souls who people it with their own passions and chimeras. Certainly a garrulous man, whose chief pleasure in life is to declaim from pulpit or rostrum, would run the risk of becoming a raving maniac on Robinson
dear life. We should never feel at home in one. Besides there would be no place on those gold encrusted walls to hang her portrait; and in those formal halls there is never an intimate corner. Decidedly here I have found the place in which to live and cultivate the dream of my life.” And while his eyes continued to examine every detail of the print, he went on musing: “A lovely wooden cabin by the sea and all around those curious glossy trees whose names I have forgotten … in the air an
I want to, since it gives you pleasure.’ That was her invariable answer; and, I assure you, if you were to give this wall or that sofa a good bastinado, you would draw from them more sighs than the most furious throes of love ever drew from my mistress’s breast. After living together for a year she finally confessed that she had never felt the least pleasure in love. The unequal duel ended by disgusting me, and so this incomparable girl got herself married. Some years later the fancy struck me to
dream of sailing forth; It is to satisfy Your least desire, they ply Hither through all the waters of the earth. The sun at close of day Clothes the fields of hay, Then the canals, at last the town entire In hyacinth and gold: Slowly the land is rolled Sleepward under a sea of gentle fire. There, there is nothing else but grace and measure, Richness, quietness, and pleasure. Translated by Richard Wilbur Cf: “L’Invitation Au Voyage,” page 32. COMES THE CHARMING EVENING Comes the