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The Tragic True LOVE Story of Blanche Monnier

Just for falling in LOVE
With a commoner
Blanche Monnier was kept in attic
For 25 years
Blanche's True LOVE survived


The year was 1876

In midst of the Third Republic period in France
When the historical power struggle of royalist ******* and republican radicals were discussed in bourgeois socialites
That's the time when
In a small place called Poitiers
Four hours away from Paris
There lived:
Madam Louise Monnier
Wealthy and prominent
Member of CLASS society
Known in Parisian high society
For their charitable works
Who had received many community awards too

With her son
Marcel Monnier
A brilliant student
And a prominent lawyer
Well respected in Paris

And her daughter
Blanche
(Marcel's sister)
Twenty Five years old
Beautiful beyond words
Intelligent
Very gentle and good natured
A young socialite in rich circles

Lived happily in their
Monnier Estate

It was during this time
Blanche fell in LOVE with a suitor
Let us call him
James
Who lived in her neighborhood
Sadly he was not young
Nor was he from rich aristocrat family
He was elderly man,
Basically a commoner
And an unsuccessful penniless lawyer

Madam Louise Monnier - disapproved
Of such alliances for her daughter Blanche and
Insisted Blanche to marry a more suitable man
Of her own age, class and status

But in passion of her LOVE -
Blanche profusely disagreed
And Madame Monnier got angry
They quarreled and argued
One day Madame Monnier locked Blanche
In a dungeon attic ordering
"Until you would agree - you are imprisoned"

Years passed
But Blanche was stubborn
So much in deep LOVE with James
She did not relent to her Mother's wishes

So the story goes....
Nine years passed

On this side James - Blanche's suitor
The beau too died in 1885

It is said that
Blanche's brother Marcel apposed his mother
To at least set Blanche FREE now
But Madam Louise Monnier had absolute
Stronghold and control over the family
Thus Marcel aboded to his mother's decree
And Blanche was kept locked still after

In the eyes of society
Beautiful young Blanche had simply disappeared
Without a clue

Madame Monnier and Marcel mourned
In front of everyone
Stating Blanche ran away
And continued to live their lives
As normal as those rich aristocrat families live

No one gave much thought to this
Everyone went about their life
As if nothing had happened

With time - they say
Blanche was forgotten
From everyone's memory

For over 25 years,
Blanche remained in a attic dungeon
Tied to her bed
Waiting for her LOVE
To LOVE, to be LOVED by JAMES
But her mother Madam Louise,
And her brother Marcel
With their two servants
No one helped her to be FREE

Blanched was chained in a dark attic room
She was accompanied by rats and lice
Day after day
Living in dirt and darkness
Alone, isolated, in solitude
Blanche became insane
Drown in her own tears and
In company of
Rats, bugs and pests...
And rotten odor

Rumors say that it was one of the female servants
Who slipped the secret of
Monnier Estate's beautiful daughter Blanche
To her boyfriend
Who immediately wrote a letter to
The Attorney General

In 1901,
Attorney General of Paris
Received an anonymous note
Handwritten and unsigned

The content were disturbing
And The Attorney General
Sent his police team to investigate
The Police arrived to search Monnier Estate

At first,
Police couldn't find anything unusual
Until they came across strange odor
Coming from upper floors

When the Police went upstairs
Madam Louise Monnier sat
On the ground floor living hall
Calmly reading a book

When the Police approached
The attic room
From where the odor was coming
They saw that the room was padlocked

Realizing something amiss
Police smashed the lock and
Broke open the room

The horrors lay within

A pitch dark room
With only one window
Shut closed with black curtains

The stench of room was so over whelming
That immediately the window was broke open

With the light coming in
The police realized that the bad odor
Was because of rotting food
That littered all over the floor

And in a corner - there was a bed
Where an emaciated women was chained

She was our Blanche Monnier
Fifty years old now
Tied to the bed
It was over two decades
She had not even seen the sun
And she had lived
In her own excrements

That beauty of youth
That youthful LOVELY being
A divine, kind, pure hearted girl
Did not even resembled like a human

She was naked
Chained like animals to the bed
Lying on a straw mattress

She was completely
Frightened and delirious

She weighed just 50 pounds (22 kilograms)

Police covered Blanche in a white sheet
And took her to the hospital
Madam Louise Monnier - and Marcel were arrested
For this atrocious inhumane crime
Of imprisoning and treating Blanche
So badly
For what? -
for a natural act of LOVING

"We can not even comprehend
What a LOVER goes through
When subjected to such punishments"


Blanche was horrendously malnourished
In hospital she was lucid to be rescued and freed
She exclaimed...
"How lovely it is to breathe the fresh air"

When she was informed about James
She could not even remember
The reason for her current state -
Was "LOVE"
Her eyes were hollow, her face was blank

There was public out-cry all over France
It was loud and clear
Public out-raged was brimming
They wanted the mother and brother punished

And Madam Louise Monnier -
Who was seventy years old then
suffering from heart disease
Could not take the shock
Of such societal backlash
For the horrible crime she committed

It is accounted that
Madam Louise Monnier
Died in police custody
15 days after Blanche's rescue
Police say -
Probably of a heart attack

Brother Marcel was imprisoned for 15 months
He confessed of
Not being directly part of the crime
But just acting under pressure of his mother

The whole blame was put on Madam Louise Monnier
Brother Marcel was considered only an accomplice
And thus when Marcel pleaded innocent and sought pardon
He was acquitted and set FREE
Such were the laws of those days

Our LOVER - Blanche Monnier
Had suffered greatly
The mental trauma
Of LOVE longing had
Lasting psychological damage

There after
Blanche lived in a French Sanitarium
Till she died in 1913
Twelve year after she was liberated

People say - that at times
The nursing staff used to hear Blanche
Sing the songs of LOVE

And they used to see Blanche
Talking LOVINGLY with a non-existing person
Most probably that person was "James"
The man she LOVED more than her life

Thus is remembered
The story of Blanche's LOVE

She suffered but never relented
To her mother's wishes
"To forget her LOVER James"

It was impossible to survive for 25 years
Without proper food, light, sun, or any human company
In that tiny dark dungeon attic
But Blanche did miraculously survive
With the hope that one day
She will be FREE
She will meet James
And she will LOVE James
And she will say to James
"My Jamie, see I did truly LOVE YOU"

That's the power of TRUE LOVE
This is a TRUE STORY
bases on the character Blanche DuBois from Streetcar Named Desire a play by Tennassee Williams*

Crushed white satin
Hot baths* on warm days
Polka music makes me sway
That young man I wish had stayed

Light dances around me
Never daring a touch
Here in the lantern light
All a lady has is her looks

Stranger Stranger everywhere
Darkness always a little too near
Shep oh Shep where are you dear?
"I don't know you" please get off

For star and the common pig
I leave no words of fancy
For now I sit with pen an paper
In the light of a padded room

and the piano was still slow and *blue
Andrew Rueter Nov 2017
We live in the unlighted state of America
Where what happens when we turn the lights off
Is dealt with darkness
And matters of delicate touch
Are treated with sharpness
When our only language
Is to inflict anguish
We cut connections in the bedroom
To clear our cynical head room
For contempt and judgement

People looking for a feeling to fall into
Or a reason to live
Must face frigid climates
When the public invades privacy
And ill fated ****** exploits
Pervade salacious tabloids
Our ****** regrets
Cut the deepest
Society reaps them
Sowing us together with resentment
We provide each other with relief
But not the relief we're looking for
We give each other hours of relief
Until those useless hours become days
And those fruitless days become years
That engender endless tears
As it remains warm in our car
But the winter outside freezes anything that breaks the plane
And our air conditioning only helps so much
When the spinning wheels are in our faces

There is a national coverage in the media
That presents a bleak picture of the ****** health of America
I feel I sit somewhere in between
*** offenders and a disgusted public
When I observe the observers
Who are too scared shitless to ever face their own emotions
Judge those for overindulging in their emotions
They lived their life in fear and safety
So they could be the righteous ones
To admonish the risk takers and mistake makers
Yet they are of the least value to humanity
They're the people who grade all your answers as incorrect
Without providing their perfect alternatives
While trying to erase the context
Because of what the context has to say about society
People feeling that they can never be emotionally vulnerable
Until they experience sheer desperation
And no dollar contract
Can replace human contact
Yet we give men so much money and power
And ask them to feel fine in our cold shower
Until we are soiled by their intention
A nation committed to selling Stella Artois
A nation full of Blanche DuBois

Humanity folds in on itself
When we attack with ***
Humanity does itself a disservice
By not trying to understand these attacks honestly
We forsake forgiveness
And embrace desperation
Until we become unbearably desperate
For attention
For approval
For ****** contact
For money
For validation
And sometimes our desperate desires become tangled
I'd like to think of that as love
And not a meeting between two practical rapists
That conjoin in the middle
Yet somehow come out distorted on the other side
J'entrai dernièrement dans une vieille église ;

La nef était déserte, et sur la dalle grise,

Les feux du soir, passant par les vitraux dorés,

Voltigeaient et dansaient, ardemment colorés.

Comme je m'en allais, visitant les chapelles,

Avec tous leurs festons et toutes leurs dentelles,

Dans un coin du jubé j'aperçus un tableau

Représentant un Christ qui me parut très-beau.

On y voyait saint Jean, Madeleine et la Vierge ;

Leurs chairs, d'un ton pareil à la cire de cierge,

Les faisaient ressembler, sur le fond sombre et noir,

A ces fantômes blancs qui se dressent le soir,

Et vont croisant les bras sous leurs draps mortuaires ;

Leurs robes à plis droits, ainsi que des suaires,

S'allongeaient tout d'un jet de leur nuque à leurs pieds ;

Ainsi faits, l'on eût dit qu'ils fussent copiés

Dans le campo-Santo sur quelque fresque antique,

D'un vieux maître Pisan, artiste catholique,

Tant l'on voyait reluire autour de leur beauté,

Le nimbe rayonnant de la mysticité,

Et tant l'on respirait dans leur humble attitude,

Les parfums onctueux de la béatitude.


Sans doute que c'était l'œuvre d'un Allemand,

D'un élève d'Holbein, mort bien obscurément,

A vingt ans, de misère et de mélancolie,

Dans quelque bourg de Flandre, au retour d'Italie ;

Car ses têtes semblaient, avec leur blanche chair,

Un rêve de soleil par une nuit d'hiver.


Je restai bien longtemps dans la même posture,

Pensif, à contempler cette pâle peinture ;

Je regardais le Christ sur son infâme bois,

Pour embrasser le monde, ouvrant les bras en croix ;

Ses pieds meurtris et bleus et ses deux mains clouées,

Ses chairs, par les bourreaux, à coups de fouets trouées,

La blessure livide et béante à son flanc ;

Son front d'ivoire où perle une sueur de sang ;

Son corps blafard, rayé par des lignes vermeilles,

Me faisaient naître au cœur des pitiés nonpareilles,

Et mes yeux débordaient en des ruisseaux de pleurs,

Comme dut en verser la Mère de Douleurs.

Dans l'outremer du ciel les chérubins fidèles,

Se lamentaient en chœur, la face sous leurs ailes,

Et l'un d'eux recueillait, un ciboire à la main,

Le pur-sang de la plaie où boit le genre humain ;

La sainte vierge, au bas, regardait : pauvre mère

Son divin fils en proie à l'agonie amère ;

Madeleine et saint Jean, sous les bras de la croix

Mornes, échevelés, sans soupirs et sans voix,

Plus dégoutants de pleurs qu'après la pluie un arbre,

Étaient debout, pareils à des piliers de marbre.


C'était, certes, un spectacle à faire réfléchir,

Et je sentis mon cou, comme un roseau, fléchir

Sous le vent que faisait l'aile de ma pensée,

Avec le chant du soir, vers le ciel élancée.

Je croisai gravement mes deux bras sur mon sein,

Et je pris mon menton dans le creux de ma main,

Et je me dis : « O Christ ! Tes douleurs sont trop vives ;

Après ton agonie au jardin des Olives,

Il fallait remonter près de ton père, au ciel,

Et nous laisser à nous l'éponge avec le fiel ;

Les clous percent ta chair, et les fleurons d'épines

Entrent profondément dans tes tempes divines.

Tu vas mourir, toi, Dieu, comme un homme. La mort

Recule épouvantée à ce sublime effort ;

Elle a peur de sa proie, elle hésite à la prendre,

Sachant qu'après trois jours il la lui faudra rendre,

Et qu'un ange viendra, qui, radieux et beau,

Lèvera de ses mains la pierre du tombeau ;

Mais tu n'en as pas moins souffert ton agonie,

Adorable victime entre toutes bénie ;

Mais tu n'en a pas moins avec les deux voleurs,

Étendu tes deux bras sur l'arbre de douleurs.


Ô rigoureux destin ! Une pareille vie,

D'une pareille mort si promptement suivie !

Pour tant de maux soufferts, tant d'absinthe et de fiel,

Où donc est le bonheur, le vin doux et le miel ?

La parole d'amour pour compenser l'injure,

Et la bouche qui donne un baiser par blessure ?

Dieu lui-même a besoin quand il est blasphémé,

Pour nous bénir encore de se sentir aimé,

Et tu n'as pas, Jésus, traversé cette terre,

N'ayant jamais pressé sur ton cœur solitaire

Un cœur sincère et pur, et fait ce long chemin

Sans avoir une épaule où reposer ta main,

Sans une âme choisie où répandre avec flamme

Tous les trésors d'amour enfermés dans ton âme.


Ne vous alarmez pas, esprits religieux,

Car l'inspiration descend toujours des cieux,

Et mon ange gardien, quand vint cette pensée,

De son bouclier d'or ne l'a pas repoussée.

C'est l'heure de l'extase où Dieu se laisse voir,

L'Angélus éploré tinte aux cloches du soir ;

Comme aux bras de l'amant, une vierge pâmée,

L'encensoir d'or exhale une haleine embaumée ;

La voix du jour s'éteint, les reflets des vitraux,

Comme des feux follets, passent sur les tombeaux,

Et l'on entend courir, sous les ogives frêles,

Un bruit confus de voix et de battements d'ailes ;

La foi descend des cieux avec l'obscurité ;

L'orgue vibre ; l'écho répond : Eternité !

Et la blanche statue, en sa couche de pierre,

Rapproche ses deux mains et se met en prière.

Comme un captif, brisant les portes du cachot,

L'âme du corps s'échappe et s'élance si haut,

Qu'elle heurte, en son vol, au détour d'un nuage,

L'étoile échevelée et l'archange en voyage ;

Tandis que la raison, avec son pied boiteux,

La regarde d'en-bas se perdre dans les cieux.

C'est à cette heure-là que les divins poètes,

Sentent grandir leur front et deviennent prophètes.


Ô mystère d'amour ! Ô mystère profond !

Abîme inexplicable où l'esprit se confond ;

Qui de nous osera, philosophe ou poète,

Dans cette sombre nuit plonger avant la tête ?

Quelle langue assez haute et quel cœur assez pur,

Pour chanter dignement tout ce poème obscur ?

Qui donc écartera l'aile blanche et dorée,

Dont un ange abritait cette amour ignorée ?

Qui nous dira le nom de cette autre Éloa ?

Et quelle âme, ô Jésus, à t'aimer se voua ?


Murs de Jérusalem, vénérables décombres,

Vous qui les avez vus et couverts de vos ombres,

Ô palmiers du Carmel ! Ô cèdres du Liban !

Apprenez-nous qui donc il aimait mieux que Jean ?

Si vos troncs vermoulus et si vos tours minées,

Dans leur écho fidèle, ont, depuis tant d'années,

Parmi les souvenirs des choses d'autrefois,

Conservé leur mémoire et le son de leur voix ;

Parlez et dites-nous, ô forêts ! ô ruines !

Tout ce que vous savez de ces amours divines !

Dites quels purs éclairs dans leurs yeux reluisaient,

Et quels soupirs ardents de leurs cœurs s'élançaient !

Et toi, Jourdain, réponds, sous les berceaux de palmes,

Quand la lune trempait ses pieds dans tes eaux calmes,

Et que le ciel semait sa face de plus d'yeux,

Que n'en traîne après lui le paon tout radieux ;

Ne les as-tu pas vus sur les fleurs et les mousses,

Glisser en se parlant avec des voix plus douces

Que les roucoulements des colombes de mai,

Que le premier aveu de celle que j'aimai ;

Et dans un pur baiser, symbole du mystère,

Unir la terre au ciel et le ciel à la terre.


Les échos sont muets, et le flot du Jourdain

Murmure sans répondre et passe avec dédain ;

Les morts de Josaphat, troublés dans leur silence,

Se tournent sur leur couche, et le vent frais balance

Au milieu des parfums dans les bras du palmier,

Le chant du rossignol et le nid du ramier.


Frère, mais voyez donc comme la Madeleine

Laisse sur son col blanc couler à flots d'ébène

Ses longs cheveux en pleurs, et comme ses beaux yeux,

Mélancoliquement, se tournent vers les cieux !

Qu'elle est belle ! Jamais, depuis Ève la blonde,

Une telle beauté n'apparut sur le monde ;

Son front est si charmant, son regard est si doux,

Que l'ange qui la garde, amoureux et jaloux,

Quand le désir craintif rôde et s'approche d'elle,

Fait luire son épée et le chasse à coups d'aile.


Ô pâle fleur d'amour éclose au paradis !

Qui répands tes parfums dans nos déserts maudits,

Comment donc as-tu fait, ô fleur ! Pour qu'il te reste

Une couleur si fraîche, une odeur si céleste ?

Comment donc as-tu fait, pauvre sœur du ramier,

Pour te conserver pure au cœur de ce bourbier ?

Quel miracle du ciel, sainte prostituée,

Que ton cœur, cette mer, si souvent remuée,

Des coquilles du bord et du limon impur,

N'ait pas, dans l'ouragan, souillé ses flots d'azur,

Et qu'on ait toujours vu sous leur manteau limpide,

La perle blanche au fond de ton âme candide !

C'est que tout cœur aimant est réhabilité,

Qu'il vous vient une autre âme et que la pureté

Qui remontait au ciel redescend et l'embrasse,

comme à sa sœur coupable une sœur qui fait grâce ;

C'est qu'aimer c'est pleurer, c'est croire, c'est prier ;

C'est que l'amour est saint et peut tout expier.


Mon grand peintre ignoré, sans en savoir les causes,

Dans ton sublime instinct tu comprenais ces choses,

Tu fis de ses yeux noirs ruisseler plus de pleurs ;

Tu gonflas son beau sein de plus hautes douleurs ;

La voyant si coupable et prenant pitié d'elle,

Pour qu'on lui pardonnât, tu l'as faite plus belle,

Et ton pinceau pieux, sur le divin contour,

A promené longtemps ses baisers pleins d'amour ;

Elle est plus belle encore que la vierge Marie,

Et le prêtre, à genoux, qui soupire et qui prie,

Dans sa pieuse extase, hésite entre les deux,

Et ne sait pas laquelle est la reine des cieux.


Ô sainte pécheresse ! Ô grande repentante !

Madeleine, c'est toi que j'eusse pour amante

Dans mes rêves choisie, et toute la beauté,

Tout le rayonnement de la virginité,

Montrant sur son front blanc la blancheur de son âme,

Ne sauraient m'émouvoir, ô femme vraiment femme,

Comme font tes soupirs et les pleurs de tes yeux,

Ineffable rosée à faire envie aux cieux !

Jamais lis de Saron, divine courtisane,

Mirant aux eaux des lacs sa robe diaphane,

N'eut un plus pur éclat ni de plus doux parfums ;

Ton beau front inondé de tes longs cheveux bruns,

Laisse voir, au travers de ta peau transparente,

Le rêve de ton âme et ta pensée errante,

Comme un globe d'albâtre éclairé par dedans !

Ton œil est un foyer dont les rayons ardents

Sous la cendre des cœurs ressuscitent les flammes ;

O la plus amoureuse entre toutes les femmes !

Les séraphins du ciel à peine ont dans le cœur,

Plus d'extase divine et de sainte langueur ;

Et tu pourrais couvrir de ton amour profonde,

Comme d'un manteau d'or la nudité du monde !

Toi seule sais aimer, comme il faut qu'il le soit,

Celui qui t'a marquée au front avec le doigt,

Celui dont tu baignais les pieds de myrrhe pure,

Et qui pour s'essuyer avait ta chevelure ;

Celui qui t'apparut au jardin, pâle encore

D'avoir dormi sa nuit dans le lit de la mort ;

Et, pour te consoler, voulut que la première

Tu le visses rempli de gloire et de lumière.


En faisant ce tableau, Raphaël inconnu,

N'est-ce pas ? Ce penser comme à moi t'est venu,

Et que ta rêverie a sondé ce mystère,

Que je voudrais pouvoir à la fois dire et taire ?

Ô poètes ! Allez prier à cet autel,

A l'heure où le jour baisse, à l'instant solennel,

Quand d'un brouillard d'encens la nef est toute pleine.

Regardez le Jésus et puis la Madeleine ;

Plongez-vous dans votre âme et rêvez au doux bruit

Que font en s'éployant les ailes de la nuit ;

Peut-être un chérubin détaché de la toile,

A vos yeux, un moment, soulèvera le voile,

Et dans un long soupir l'orgue murmurera

L'ineffable secret que ma bouche taira.
Original French

Dictes moy ou, n'en quel pays,
Est Flora la belle Rommaine,
Archipiades ne Thaïs,
Qui fut sa cousine germaine,
Echo parlant quant bruyt on maine
Dessus riviere ou sus estan,
Qui beaulté ot trop plus q'humaine.
Mais ou sont les neiges d'antan?

Ou est la tres sage Helloïs,
Pour qui chastré fut et puis moyne
Pierre Esbaillart a Saint Denis?
Pour son amour ot ceste essoyne.
Semblablement, ou est la royne
Qui commanda que Buridan
Fust geté en ung sac en Saine?
Mais ou sont les neiges d'antan?

La royne Blanche comme lis
Qui chantoit a voix de seraine,
Berte au grand pié, Beatris, Alis,
Haremburgis qui tint le Maine,
Et Jehanne la bonne Lorraine
Qu'Englois brulerent a Rouan;
Ou sont ilz, ou, Vierge souvraine?
Mais ou sont les neiges d'antan?

Prince, n'enquerez de sepmaine
Ou elles sont, ne de cest an,
Qu'a ce reffrain ne vous remaine:
Mais ou sont les neiges d'antan?


English Translation

Ballad Of The Ladies Of Yore

Tell me where, in what country,
Is Flora the beautiful Roman,
Archipiada or Thais
Who was first cousin to her once,
Echo who speaks when there's a sound
On a pond or a river
Whose beauty was more than human?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?
Where is the leamed Heloise
For whom they castrated Pierre Abelard
And made him a monk at Saint-Denis,
For his love he took this pain,
Likewise where is the queen
Who commanded that Buridan
Be thrown in a sack into the Seine?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

The queen white as a lily
Who sang with a siren's voice,
Big-footed Bertha, Beatrice, Alice,
Haremburgis who held Maine
And Jeanne the good maid of Lorraine
Whom the English bumt at Rouen, where,
Where are they, sovereign ******?
But where are the snows of yesteryear?

Prince, don't ask me in a week
or in a year what place they are;
I can only give you this refrain:
Where are the snows of yesteryear?
Mateuš Conrad Aug 2016
now i know why i might engage with writing obscene
poems, chauvinism included, but still there
is no burning excuse in my mind with the way
western society actively desires censorship of certain
words, i already attributed censoring obscene
words as worse than what this tactic precipitates into:
the apathetic spread of *******, and violence
in general... it crosses my mind that sparring with violent
language cushions people from violet action...
to utilise violent language with that: pardon my French
attitude does more good than evil on the users...
how many road rage incidents could have been avoided
if people were unable to watch their tongue:
somehow we're making language sterile, by actively
pursuing this sort of censorship: which is not even
remotely politically related / motivated, we're bringing
an anaemic status quo in how fluidly we speak -
we desire to not hear the sometimes funny and the sometimes
awful... but we choose to see the god-fearing horrific...
ask any blind-man about music and he'd say:
well, i can dance to it in a nucleus position, centrally
gravitational pull - but ask the deaf man about
what he has to say when seeing **** written to counter
obscenity, as in cartoon-like: f&%£! it's just plain silly,
pocket-sized expression of psychotic behaviours,
rummaging through them i find only one source of inspiration:
the fact that we're in this blind-man's garden of innocence,
somehow dressed in the camouflage of censorship such
a tiny problem, that it does indeed require 23 mattresses
for the princess to not feel the frozen *** agitating her...
this sort of censorship in its application is under
a false sense of purpose, it really doesn't change people's
behaviour for the better, it doesn't pacify them, in does
the reverse: it infuriates, it makes violence more potent...
i'm still trying to figure out why such words
will make our perceptions saintly... unless of course
that's the reason behind them, as way of invoking an
anaesthetic placebo, a placebo that's actually active rather
than passive - presuming the anaesthetic placebo gives
way to an aesthetic active apathy-inducing ingredient...
meaning we can't bare to hear swear words, but we can
gladly watch 20 hours of 20 : 1 ****... censoring **** ****
**** **** will not escape Newtonian physics...
given our current scenario, Newtonian physics is far
more important than Einstein's relativity, i'd hate to be
in denial about cause & effect... as began with Socrates,
i too abhor moral relativism... of course Newton got
the gravity bit wrong, but i like the simpler version...
plus... there was no Romance with Einstein...
no apple, no tree, no Voltaire... meaning we don't necessarily
write history collectively, with all of us starting from
the big bang or the view from the Galapagos islands...
we don't... we continue writing history not from a
collective consciousness genesis... or from the collective
unconscious genesis - that's Jung with his archetypes
(devil, god, wise man, mother, father etc.) rather than
dreams (Freud) - we can chose were to write the future...
it's not so much ignorance as arm-chair intellectualism,
it's not about the safety of understanding something,
but the comfort of choosing to understand something...
which is pretty much to my excuse for my previous poems...
Heidegger... and that concept of Dasein -
i never bothered to understand it to the point of
reacting subjectively to it, by that i mean an interest
in writing about it, an interpolation of the subject with
alternative variations... i objectified it, i also countered it
when objectifying the concept turned out to be an
everyday object, shortening my quest.
the counter? hiersein, i.e. being here, here denoting a
solipsistic classification of awareness with / in the world -
which is basically me in my room, admiring my library,
my record collection, my torn sneakers, everything that
is classified exclusive to what dasein evolves into
when all its grammatical weaving only express a verb,
i.e. concern... so i thought, given this what can hiersein
(being here / nonchalance) actually show me as
my lack of interest in: "changing the world".
it became obvious yesterday, i had a hard time when i
didn't read the day's copy of the times (more on this later),
instead i had to suffice with construction site media,
you might have heard of this newspaper: the daily star,
at 20 pence a pop, you will see what £1.20 makes to
your psyche... but that's basically it, i objectified Heidegger's
concept and made it into an everyday object, in this
case and as the only case available: a newspaper -
and the trick is? well, with a newspaper like daily star
you don't actually experience dasein - it's completely
missing in this style of media, and that's worrying given
my barbaric poetry of yesterday... it's missing, not there,
such object-for-object chirality is what gives birth to
hiersein (being here); but today i returned to my usual
media diet, a flicked through the times and the natural
balance of personal objects and a fresh impersonal object
coexisted - the newspaper is truly the most adequate
compounded expression of Heidegger's dasein -
which i attribute to the constant need to emphasise an
empathy with others... empathising is a neutral form
of sympathising, since sympathy is sourced in shared
experiences: **** victims (e.g.) - therefore empathy is
something that in the ontological structuring of dasein,
which opposes the ontological structuring of hiersein,
which is structured by apathy; there is nothing else for
me to write, apart from the compendium proof
of the disparity of sources, i.e. headlines and subheadings:

- prior compendium -

i will never understand the point of autobiographies,
the majority of autobiographies are written
on a p.s. basis, after the facts / actions,
never immediately, concerning ideas /
solidified thoughts, thoughts condensed into idea
that allow thinking / cognitive narration to
continue regardless with what's being achieved...
i haven't anything autobiographical dissimilar
with something biographical...
Plato wrote that wonderful biography like
Shakespearean theatre, but i guess his critics felt
the claustrophobic tug & pull of mermaids...
still the problem ascends heights unparalleled -
even with ghost writers doing the leg-work...
cheap-buggers never learned to write, let alone read,
and here they are writing biographies...
ah, **** it... they're only sketches... whether biographic
or autobiographic... they're still mere sketches...
if this was the art world the revenue would come
posthumously, when it comes to literacy
nothing really distinguishes poets from
those prescribing pedestrian signs...
the Olympians can moan at the vacant stadium...
that there's a hierarchy in sports,
with the favoured monochrome idealisation
of where the bunny money is in the whirlpool
of the rabbit hole investment: football, volleyball...
but the literary events are the same...
people love to lie that they read the bestseller to
its full extent... but treat books like chairs and tables...
inertia prone half finished, sat on for 2 weeks of
the entire year... the Olympians are very much
like poets, and i care to distance myself from either
demand for more interest being invoked...
i like esoteric sports, i like esoteric writing...
but that's how it stand: poets are Olympians where
novelists are footballers, who retire at 30 and
then think about what to do with their wages
that are 10x higher than the everyday labourer...
start a restaurant, buy a strip of houses in Liverpool
like Michael Owen? good guess, here's to exploiting
youth disgracefully... that's what they're getting,
and these are the dilemma points to consider...
they're the equivalent gladiators of our time,
Rome was just a sleeper before it awoke once more...
but i'll never understand why these
people decided to exploit literature for gain...
all these academics with their pristine purity of discovery
are pacified when dictating print,
what poet, has a chance in hell, to appear gladly
excavated from Plato's cave of television?
about none.
i too was focusing on 20th century literature,
before 21st literature came about...
and i thought, oh god: they're really going to create
a totalitarian democracy, every artist will be
strip-searched for adding cinnamon and chilli to their
writing to bounce away from conformist
sober and sane extraction of alter wordings...
this 21st scene will become polarised...
we'll have the extinction of One Direction over a joint,
while the Rolling Stones drank a keg of whiskey
and pulled off a show... we'll have moralisation
of the fans to subdue the artists, which will mean
no artist will ably create a zeitgeist to rebel... everyone
will suddenly experience a weird sort of communism...
the worst kind... it will mean having
all the mental freedoms without the ability to
economise a coup... basically an inertia, an immediate
fatality... we can't economise a coup...
which boils down to why so many autobiographies
aren't really biographic, but rather consolidating,
by the meaning: autobiographic i intended to relate
the everyday... the most secretive account of life:
the everyday... this is stressing Proust,
even though i preferred Joyce over Proust i keep
the everyday the prime ideal: the only detail,
so that an autobiography can make sense,
automation of writing, like breathing or sneezing...
not some monetary-spinning device 20 years after
the facts... 20 years later you're pretty much writing
fiction... i am all for the biosphere of expanding
Alveoli... but when did you ever read an autobiography
that mentioned the taste of weak coffee
from the Friday of 20th of August 2016? never;
you read autobiographies
like you read self-help books...  waiting for
all that experience regurgitating motivational talk
about reaching a plateau of comparative success...
i can understand autobiographies written by the elders,
i understand biographies written about people
posthumously - but the tragedy is, given the spinning
wheel of money? we're getting "auto" biographies
written toward their 3rd volume renditions of
people aged 30... let alone 40... so much for
western society having the upper hand on political matters...
just saying: sort your own **** before trying
to sort other people's problems...
i could understand if these autobiographies were written
as described: automaton solo... but they're not...
before the compendium it's this everlasting presence
of a desired body of power being depicted:
prior the monopoly of knowledge, there was a monopoly
of literacy... given that 99% of us are literate, it
actually doesn't mean a third donkey's *******
whether we can read, or write, we got shelved in controlling
this once priestly vanity, we got taught bureaucracy alongside...
but the monopoly of literacy is way past us,
we're being convened in the ability to monopolise knowledge,
(oh please, don't let the paranoia seep in,
remember yourself when reading me, once in a while,
i don't drag you to phantasmagorical heights, even if i could,
i'd prefer you being agile in learning how to be bored
than letting your repel the same boredom i too share,
well... but **** me if you want to be the next Lenin) -
and the easiest way to monopolise knowledge? the media...
you basically need a lot of facts, and an evolved version
of dialectics, dialectics being the prime enemy of democracy
(it's not an alternative political model like despotism as
we are held to believe, it's actually dialectics,
suppressing other forms of collectivisation is the one
sure method of suppressing the attempt at dialectics
(individualism) - by making people overly opinionated,
ergo: the inability to engage with opinions, blind-alleys
throughout all plausible attempts to do so) -
so once you have enough facts to fiddle with the Rubik's cube
of juxtaposition, you end up with the ultra-scientific
form of dialectics... the matter of opinion in relation
to truth without a relative uniformity that prescribes
the status quo stasis is a debate about how accurate
we all are: i.e., is that true to the closest centimetre,
or the closest millimetre? it's a bit like watching a Zeno
paradox:
                 10.1                           and 10.01
      which one's tortoise and which is Achilles?
well, you know; ah ****! the compendium of the two
newspapers which got me slightly depressed...

- the compendium -

a. daily star

- B. BRO SAM'S SECRET 'NERVOUS BREAKDOWN'
- Laura & Jason's baby joy
- Robbie (Williams) £1.6M a night!
- BREXIT BOOST ON JOB FRONT
- ANGE DAD BACKS TRUMP
- JR'S wife Linda set to Holly
- Edd's no Beverly Hills flop
(Lana among cow *******)
- LAURA: OUR TINY TROTTS WILL BE WORLD-BEATERS
- FURY AT BAD LOSERS' SLURS
- 'Jealous sis' jibes
- MAKE YOUR KID AN OLYMPICS ACE
- Peaty: I want to be a rapper
- TV girl really ill
- **** SAM, 'ON THE BRINK OF BREAKDOWN'
- COSTA ***** HELL
- CAGING ANJEM WILL INSPIRE NEW JIHADIS
- POG'S LOADED AGENT BUYS CAPONE'S LAIR
- I'll make Kylie a pop star
- JEZ DOESN'T KNOW ANT FROM HIS DEC
- GUILTY OF DEMONIC SAVAGERY
- Great British Rake In
- Britain is *******
- BAYWATCH U.K.
- Va Va Vroom
- JUST JANE: My lover snubs plea to get wed
- HART: I'LL DECIDE WHEN TO GO.

b. the times

- Boy victim becomes a symbol of Assad's war
- US Olympics swimmers invented robbery tale, say Rio police
- Make us sell healthy food, supermarkets implore May (P.M.)
- Lost weekend of the lying best man
- fears over free speech delay law to silence hate preacher
- Met's 'commuter cops' live in France
- Husbands happiest when they earn half as much as wives
- Socialists plot to drive Britain left
- Fake human sacrifice filmed at European high altar of physics
- Officers investigated over ex-footballer's Taser death
- Number of pupils taking languages at record low
   (Mandarin @ 2,849 - % decrease of 8.1,
    alarmingly religious studies 27,032 up by 4.9%
    and psychology of status 59,469 up by 4.3%....
    meaning the mad will soon be diagnosing the sane
   as mad, just because the curriculum said so)
- Top grades add up to 100% at the school for maths prodigies
- Deprived sixth formers thrive on competition
- European students rush to get into British universities
- DVLA earns £10m selling driver's details
- Mystery over Kenyan death of aristocrat
- Journalist who voted twice reported to police for
  'fraud'
- Tomato tax threatens European trade war
- Love story of the Pantomime
- Homeless conmen fleeced widow, 81
- Brownlee brothers at the Olympics...
- Hopeful shoppers give sales a lift after Brexit vote
- MoD guard could be stood down despite terrot threat
- Owners spit mansion after failing to sell
- The job with international appeal: saving our hedgehogs
- Finch warns unborn chicks if weather gets warm
- Migrant violence rises after decline in policing around Jungle
- Longest road tunnel promises a relaxing ride under Pennines
- Mothers step up to drive Tube trains through night
(rowdy teens ageing exponentially on a Saturday night
when not getting a lift, ******...)
-MP's deal with bookmaker to be investigated
- Ebola nurse 'hid high temperature'
- Shoesmith's ex-huspand kept child *******
- Morpurgo war tale springs into life
- Supergran fights off teenage muggers
- IVF is more successful for white women
OPINION SECTION
- Great political fiction is good for democracy
- the BBC is leaving its audiences in the dark
- airline food? just pass me the gin and tonic
- Modern Olympics began on the fields of Rugby
/ greasy polls, holding firm, tongue tied,
  call for compulsory targets to tackle obesity,
second in line, mindfulness course, cost of planning,
puffins v. ship rats.... and all future letters to the editor /
- Moscow presses Turkey for access to US airbases
- Hundreds killed each month in Assad's jails
- Putin bans celebration of defeated KGB coup
(another James Bond movie on the cards,
i'm assured, and with a moral carte blanche) -
Hollande clams Carla Bruni spied concerning his
use of diapers...
- Euthanasia tourists flock Belgian A & E from France,
  where a revival of ****** made people dress shark-fin
  sharp on the catwalk...
- Mosquito pesticide linkage application = intersex /
   East German women
- Haiti cholera linked to Nepalese **** and ***** via
  the
Je suis l'astre des nuits. Je brille, pâle et blanche,
Sur la feuille qui tremble au sommet d'une branche,
Sur le ruisseau qui dort, sur les lacs, bien plus beaux
Quand mes voiles d'argent s'étendent sur leurs eaux.
Mes rayons vont chercher les fleurs que je préfère,
Et font monter au ciel les parfums de la terre ;
Je donne la rosée au rameau desséché,
Que l'ardeur du soleil a, sur le sol, penché.
Sitôt que je parais, tout se tait et repose,
L'homme quitte les champs, et l'abeille la rose :
Plus de bruit dans les airs, plus de chant dans les bois ;
Devant mon doux regard nul n'élève sa voix,
De la terre ou du ciel aucun son ne s'élance,
J'arrive avec la nuit, et je règne en silence !
Je cache mes rayons quand le cri des hiboux
Vient troubler mon repos et mon calme si doux.

Je suis l'astre des nuits ; je brille, pâle et blanche,
Sur le cœur attristé, sur le front qui se penche,
Sur tout ce qui gémit, sur tout ce qui se plaint,
Sur tous les yeux en pleurs qu'aucun sommeil n'atteint.

Quelques heureux, parfois, me donnent un sourire,
S'aiment, et devant moi trouvent doux de le dire ;
J'écoute avec bonheur leurs longs serments d'amour,
Je leur promets tout bas de n'en rien dire au jour.
Mais les plus beaux rayons de mon blanc diadème
Sont pour vous qui souffrez !... C'est vous surtout que j'aime
Donnez-moi vos soupirs et donnez-moi vos pleurs ;
Laissez-moi deviner vos secrètes douleurs,
Le rêve inachevé qui n'a point de parole,
Que nul ne sut jamais et que nul ne console !
J'ai pour les cœurs brisés, ainsi que pour les fleurs,
Une fraîche rosée endormant les douleurs.
Écoutez-moi ce soir, vous saurez un mystère
Ignoré jusqu'ici du reste de la terre,
Secret que je révèle à ceux de mes élus,
Qui m'ont le plus aimée et qui rêvent le plus.

Je vous dirai pourquoi je brille, pâle et blanche,
Sur le cœur attristé, sur le front qui se penche,
Sur tout ce qui gémit, sur tout ce qui se plaint,
Sur tous les yeux en pleurs qu'aucun sommeil n'atteint.

Votre vie, ici-bas, est un triste voyage,
Dont le ciel, où je suis, est le port, le rivage ;
Elle a bien des écueils, la route où vous passez...
Et vous n'arrivez pas sans vous être blessés !
Vous n'abordez pas tous sur la céleste plage,
Ceux qui se sont souillés demeurent à l'écart ;
Coupables et souffrants, dans une morne attente,
Ils s'arrêtent au seuil du séjour où l'on chante.
Un ange, dont les pleurs voilent le doux regard,
Leur barre le chemin et murmure : « Plus **** ! »
- Parmi ces exilés traînant au **** leur chaîne,
Parmi les longs sanglots de ces âmes en peine,
Errantes **** de Dieu, du soleil et du jour,
Moi, je prends en pitié les coupables d'amour.
J'appelle auprès de moi ces Âmes de la terre,
Qu'un Dieu juste éloigna du séjour de lumière,
Parce qu'en sa présence elles gardaient encor
Un souvenir d'amour, au delà de leur mort.
Je leur donne ma nuit, mes rayons, mes étoiles,
Je donne à leur exil l'abri de mes longs voiles,
Et les larmes, le soir, qui coulent de leurs yeux,
Semblent à vos regards des étoiles des cieux ;
Ce ne sont que des pleurs... des pleurs d'âmes souffrantes,
Qui, la nuit, dans l'espace avec moi sont errantes.

Vous, encor sur la terre où s'agitent vos cœurs,
Levez les yeux vers moi ! j'ai près de moi vos sœurs.
Oh ! veillez bien sur vous... et priez bien pour elles !
Entendez-vous leurs pleurs ? car si mes nuits sont belles,
Pourtant Dieu n'est pas là ! le seul repos, c'est Lui...
Il fait jour près de Dieu, - je ne suis que la nuit !

Je vous ai dit pourquoi je brille pâle et blanche
Sur le cœur attristé, sur le front qui se penche,
Sur tout ce qui gémit, sur tout ce qui se plaint,
Sur tous les yeux en pleurs qu'aucun sommeil n'atteint.
n stiles carmona Sep 2018
Fifty-percent illusion at any given time.
Your unintended muse will plead 'not guilty' to the crime
Of snatching back the quill and reshaping every line
into the role she wished to play
-- it seems the choice was never mine --

but the boy with the weighted wedding ring,
the self-appointed jury of the south;
him sheepish at the door with roses,
and the brute who owns this house.

Was it feminine mystique or was I crystal clear
while you blocked your ears and pretended not to hear?

A three-act structured tragedy.
All archetypes assigned.
"We've had this date since the beginning" --
if the part must be mine to play,
it is in my hands to manipulate.
Direct your blame to those who cast the roles.

Torn petticoat, blue piano;
flattered by the dimming glow --
oh, to be glossy pink and gold!
A trophy bride. A victor's prize.
(I snap awake and still see his eyes --
that ego swells him thrice my size --
with bruising force, he parts my thighs.)

Was it hysteria - madness? - or was I crystal clear
while you blocked your ears and pretended not to hear?

My fate was written for me,
in the frontal lobes of those who came before me:
down that narrative route, all bumps and troughs -- desire!
Fragments of an old Rossetti poem... o, vanity of vanities... the streetcar rattles and groans.
self-indulgent b-side to the prior poem 'i, ophelia'; honing in on blanche dubois (a streetcar named desire). excuse the rhymes, it's been a while.
maggie W  Apr 2014
Moon and Swoon
maggie W Apr 2014
Mr.Strickland reminds me of you.
If I were Blanche, I would do what she did too.
Like a sophisticated beast
Howling in the territory of yours
So primitive and so civilized.
In a cocoon weaved of solitude
Poor Blanche throws herself in the abyss
Swoon over your charm,
But you are lured by the Moon.
Victor Hugo  Jun 2017
Fantômes
I.

Hélas ! que j'en ai vu mourir de jeunes filles !
C'est le destin. Il faut une proie au trépas.
Il faut que l'herbe tombe au tranchant des faucilles ;
Il faut que dans le bal les folâtres quadrilles
Foulent des roses sous leurs pas.

Il faut que l'eau s'épuise à courir les vallées ;
Il faut que l'éclair brille, et brille peu d'instants,
Il faut qu'avril jaloux brûle de ses gelées
Le beau pommier, trop fier de ses fleurs étoilées,
Neige odorante du printemps.

Oui, c'est la vie. Après le jour, la nuit livide.
Après tout, le réveil, infernal ou divin.
Autour du grand banquet siège une foule avide ;
Mais bien des conviés laissent leur place vide.
Et se lèvent avant la fin.

II.

Que j'en ai vu mourir ! - L'une était rose et blanche ;
L'autre semblait ouïr de célestes accords ;
L'autre, faible, appuyait d'un bras son front qui penche,
Et, comme en s'envolant l'oiseau courbe la branche,
Son âme avait brisé son corps.

Une, pâle, égarée, en proie au noir délire,
Disait tout bas un nom dont nul ne se souvient ;
Une s'évanouit, comme un chant sur la lyre ;
Une autre en expirant avait le doux sourire
D'un jeune ange qui s'en revient.

Toutes fragiles fleurs, sitôt mortes que nées !
Alcyions engloutis avec leurs nids flottants !
Colombes, que le ciel au monde avait données !
Qui, de grâce, et d'enfance, et d'amour couronnées,
Comptaient leurs ans par les printemps !

Quoi, mortes ! quoi, déjà, sous la pierre couchées !
Quoi ! tant d'êtres charmants sans regard et sans voix !
Tant de flambeaux éteints ! tant de fleurs arrachées !...
Oh ! laissez-moi fouler les feuilles desséchées,
Et m'égarer au fond des bois !

Deux fantômes ! c'est là, quand je rêve dans l'ombre,
Qu'ils viennent tour à tour m'entendre et me parler.
Un jour douteux me montre et me cache leur nombre.
A travers les rameaux et le feuillage sombre
Je vois leurs yeux étinceler.

Mon âme est une sœur pour ces ombres si belles.
La vie et le tombeau pour nous n'ont plus de loi.
Tantôt j'aide leurs pas, tantôt je prends leurs ailes.
Vision ineffable où je suis mort comme elles,
Elles, vivantes comme moi !

Elles prêtent leur forme à toutes mes pensées.
Je les vois ! je les vois ! Elles me disent : Viens !
Puis autour d'un tombeau dansent entrelacées ;
Puis s'en vont lentement, par degrés éclipsées.
Alors je songe et me souviens...

III.

Une surtout. - Un ange, une jeune espagnole !
Blanches mains, sein gonflé de soupirs innocents,
Un œil noir, où luisaient des regards de créole,
Et ce charme inconnu, cette fraîche auréole
Qui couronne un front de quinze ans !

Non, ce n'est point d'amour qu'elle est morte : pour elle,
L'amour n'avait encor ni plaisirs ni combats ;
Rien ne faisait encor battre son cœur rebelle ;
Quand tous en la voyant s'écriaient : Qu'elle est belle !
Nul ne le lui disait tout bas.

Elle aimait trop le bal, c'est ce qui l'a tuée.
Le bal éblouissant ! le bal délicieux !
Sa cendre encor frémit, doucement remuée,
Quand, dans la nuit sereine, une blanche nuée
Danse autour du croissant des cieux.

Elle aimait trop le bal. - Quand venait une fête,
Elle y pensait trois jours, trois nuits elle en rêvait,
Et femmes, musiciens, danseurs que rien n'arrête,
Venaient, dans son sommeil, troublant sa jeune tête,
Rire et bruire à son chevet.

Puis c'étaient des bijoux, des colliers, des merveilles !
Des ceintures de moire aux ondoyants reflets ;
Des tissus plus légers que des ailes d'abeilles ;
Des festons, des rubans, à remplir des corbeilles ;
Des fleurs, à payer un palais !

La fête commencée, avec ses sœurs rieuses
Elle accourait, froissant l'éventail sous ses doigts,
Puis s'asseyait parmi les écharpes soyeuses,
Et son cœur éclatait en fanfares joyeuses,
Avec l'orchestre aux mille voix.

C'était plaisir de voir danser la jeune fille !
Sa basquine agitait ses paillettes d'azur ;
Ses grands yeux noirs brillaient sous la noire mantille.
Telle une double étoile au front des nuits scintille
Sous les plis d'un nuage obscur.

Tout en elle était danse, et rire, et folle joie.
Enfant ! - Nous l'admirions dans nos tristes loisirs ;
Car ce n'est point au bal que le cœur se déploie,
La centre y vole autour des tuniques de soie,
L'ennui sombre autour des plaisirs.

Mais elle, par la valse ou la ronde emportée,
Volait, et revenait, et ne respirait pas,
Et s'enivrait des sons de la flûte vantée,
Des fleurs, des lustres d'or, de la fête enchantée,
Du bruit des vois, du bruit des pas.

Quel bonheur de bondir, éperdue, en la foule,
De sentir par le bal ses sens multipliés,
Et de ne pas savoir si dans la nue on roule,
Si l'on chasse en fuyant la terre, ou si l'on foule
Un flot tournoyant sous ses pieds !

Mais hélas ! il fallait, quand l'aube était venue,
Partir, attendre au seuil le manteau de satin.
C'est alors que souvent la danseuse ingénue
Sentit en frissonnant sur son épaule nue
Glisser le souffle du matin.

Quels tristes lendemains laisse le bal folâtre !
Adieu parure, et danse, et rires enfantins !
Aux chansons succédait la toux opiniâtre,
Au plaisir rose et frais la fièvre au teint bleuâtre,
Aux yeux brillants les yeux éteints.

IV.

Elle est morte. - A quinze ans, belle, heureuse, adorée !
Morte au sortir d'un bal qui nous mit tous en deuil.
Morte, hélas ! et des bras d'une mère égarée
La mort aux froides mains la prit toute parée,
Pour l'endormir dans le cercueil.

Pour danser d'autres bals elle était encor prête,
Tant la mort fut pressée à prendre un corps si beau !
Et ces roses d'un jour qui couronnaient sa tête,
Qui s'épanouissaient la veille en une fête,
Se fanèrent dans un tombeau.

V.

Sa pauvre mère ! - hélas ! de son sort ignorante,
Avoir mis tant d'amour sur ce frêle roseau,
Et si longtemps veillé son enfance souffrante,
Et passé tant de nuits à l'endormir pleurante
Toute petite en son berceau !

A quoi bon ? - Maintenant la jeune trépassée,
Sous le plomb du cercueil, livide, en proie au ver,
Dort ; et si, dans la tombe où nous l'avons laissée,
Quelque fête des morts la réveille glacée,
Par une belle nuit d'hiver,

Un spectre au rire affreux à sa morne toilette
Préside au lieu de mère, et lui dit : Il est temps !
Et, glaçant d'un baiser sa lèvre violette,
Passe les doigts noueux de sa main de squelette
Sous ses cheveux longs et flottants.

Puis, tremblante, il la mène à la danse fatale,
Au chœur aérien dans l'ombre voltigeant ;
Et sur l'horizon gris la lune est large et pâle,
Et l'arc-en-ciel des nuits teint d'un reflet d'opale
Le nuage aux franges d'argent.

VI.

Vous toutes qu'à ses jeux le bal riant convie,
Pensez à l'espagnole éteinte sans retour,
Jeunes filles ! Joyeuse, et d'une main ravie,
Elle allait moissonnant les roses de la vie,
Beauté, plaisir, jeunesse, amour !

La pauvre enfant, de fête en fête promenée,
De ce bouquet charmant arrangeait les couleurs ;
Mais qu'elle a passé vite, hélas ! l'infortunée !
Ainsi qu'Ophélia par le fleuve entraînée,
Elle est morte en cueillant des fleurs !

Avril 1828.
THE PROLOGUE.

Our Hoste saw well that the brighte sun
Th' arc of his artificial day had run
The fourthe part, and half an houre more;
And, though he were not deep expert in lore,
He wist it was the eight-and-twenty day
Of April, that is messenger to May;
And saw well that the shadow of every tree
Was in its length of the same quantity
That was the body ***** that caused it;
And therefore by the shadow he took his wit,                 *knowledge
That Phoebus, which that shone so clear and bright,
Degrees was five-and-forty clomb on height;
And for that day, as in that latitude,
It was ten of the clock, he gan conclude;
And suddenly he plight
his horse about.                     pulled

"Lordings," quoth he, "I warn you all this rout
,               company
The fourthe partie of this day is gone.
Now for the love of God and of Saint John
Lose no time, as farforth as ye may.
Lordings, the time wasteth night and day,
And steals from us, what privily sleeping,
And what through negligence in our waking,
As doth the stream, that turneth never again,
Descending from the mountain to the plain.
Well might Senec, and many a philosopher,
Bewaile time more than gold in coffer.
For loss of chattels may recover'd be,
But loss of time shendeth
us, quoth he.                       destroys

It will not come again, withoute dread,

No more than will Malkin's maidenhead,
When she hath lost it in her wantonness.
Let us not moulde thus in idleness.
"Sir Man of Law," quoth he, "so have ye bliss,
Tell us a tale anon, as forword* is.                        the bargain
Ye be submitted through your free assent
To stand in this case at my judgement.
Acquit you now, and *holde your behest
;             keep your promise
Then have ye done your devoir* at the least."                      duty
"Hoste," quoth he, "de par dieux jeo asente;
To breake forword is not mine intent.
Behest is debt, and I would hold it fain,
All my behest; I can no better sayn.
For such law as a man gives another wight,
He should himselfe usen it by right.
Thus will our text: but natheless certain
I can right now no thrifty
tale sayn,                           worthy
But Chaucer (though he *can but lewedly
         knows but imperfectly
On metres and on rhyming craftily)
Hath said them, in such English as he can,
Of olde time, as knoweth many a man.
And if he have not said them, leve* brother,                       dear
In one book, he hath said them in another
For he hath told of lovers up and down,
More than Ovide made of mentioun
In his Epistolae, that be full old.
Why should I telle them, since they he told?
In youth he made of Ceyx and Alcyon,
And since then he hath spoke of every one
These noble wives, and these lovers eke.
Whoso that will his large volume seek
Called the Saintes' Legend of Cupid:
There may he see the large woundes wide
Of Lucrece, and of Babylon Thisbe;
The sword of Dido for the false Enee;
The tree of Phillis for her Demophon;
The plaint of Diane, and of Hermion,
Of Ariadne, and Hypsipile;
The barren isle standing in the sea;
The drown'd Leander for his fair Hero;
The teares of Helene, and eke the woe
Of Briseis, and Laodamia;
The cruelty of thee, Queen Medea,
Thy little children hanging by the halse
,                         neck
For thy Jason, that was of love so false.
Hypermnestra, Penelop', Alcest',
Your wifehood he commendeth with the best.
But certainly no worde writeth he
Of *thilke wick'
example of Canace,                       that wicked
That loved her own brother sinfully;
(Of all such cursed stories I say, Fy),
Or else of Tyrius Apollonius,
How that the cursed king Antiochus
Bereft his daughter of her maidenhead;
That is so horrible a tale to read,
When he her threw upon the pavement.
And therefore he, of full avisement,         deliberately, advisedly
Would never write in none of his sermons
Of such unkind* abominations;                                 unnatural
Nor I will none rehearse, if that I may.
But of my tale how shall I do this day?
Me were loth to be liken'd doubteless
To Muses, that men call Pierides
(Metamorphoseos  wot what I mean),
But natheless I recke not a bean,
Though I come after him with hawebake
;                        lout
I speak in prose, and let him rhymes make."
And with that word, he with a sober cheer
Began his tale, and said as ye shall hear.

Notes to the Prologue to The Man of Law's Tale

1. Plight: pulled; the word is an obsolete past tense from
"pluck."

2. No more than will Malkin's maidenhead: a proverbial saying;
which, however, had obtained fresh point from the Reeve's
Tale, to which the host doubtless refers.

3. De par dieux jeo asente: "by God, I agree".  It is
characteristic that the somewhat pompous Sergeant of Law
should couch his assent in the semi-barbarous French, then
familiar in law procedure.

4. Ceyx and Alcyon: Chaucer treats of these in the introduction
to the poem called "The Book of the Duchess."  It relates to the
death of Blanche, wife of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, the
poet's patron, and afterwards his connexion by marriage.

5. The Saintes Legend of Cupid: Now called "The Legend of
Good Women". The names of eight ladies mentioned here are
not in the "Legend" as it has come down to us; while those of
two ladies in the "legend" -- Cleopatra and Philomela -- are her
omitted.

6. Not the Muses, who had their surname from the place near
Mount Olympus where the Thracians first worshipped them; but
the nine daughters of Pierus, king of Macedonia, whom he
called the nine Muses, and who, being conquered in a contest
with the genuine sisterhood, were changed into birds.

7. Metamorphoseos:  Ovid's.

8. Hawebake: hawbuck, country lout; the common proverbial
phrase, "to put a rogue above a gentleman," may throw light on
the reading here, which is difficult.

THE TALE.

O scatheful harm, condition of poverty,
With thirst, with cold, with hunger so confounded;
To aske help thee shameth in thine hearte;
If thou none ask, so sore art thou y-wounded,
That very need unwrappeth all thy wound hid.
Maugre thine head thou must for indigence
Or steal, or beg, or borrow thy dispence
.                      expense

Thou blamest Christ, and sayst full bitterly,
He misdeparteth
riches temporal;                          allots amiss
Thy neighebour thou witest
sinfully,                           blamest
And sayst, thou hast too little, and he hath all:
"Parfay (sayst thou) sometime he reckon shall,
When that his tail shall *brennen in the glede
,      burn in the fire
For he not help'd the needful in their need."

Hearken what is the sentence of the wise:
Better to die than to have indigence.
Thy selve neighebour will thee despise,                    that same
If thou be poor, farewell thy reverence.
Yet of the wise man take this sentence,
Alle the days of poore men be wick',                      wicked, evil
Beware therefore ere thou come to that *****.                    point

If thou be poor, thy brother hateth thee,
And all thy friendes flee from thee, alas!
O riche merchants, full of wealth be ye,
O noble, prudent folk, as in this case,
Your bagges be not fill'd with ambes ace,                   two aces
But with six-cinque, that runneth for your chance;       six-five
At Christenmass well merry may ye dance.

Ye seeke land and sea for your winnings,
As wise folk ye knowen all th' estate
Of regnes;  ye be fathers of tidings,                         *kingdoms
And tales, both of peace and of debate
:                contention, war
I were right now of tales desolate
,                     barren, empty.
But that a merchant, gone in many a year,
Me taught a tale, which ye shall after hear.

In Syria whilom dwelt a company
Of chapmen rich, and thereto sad
and true,            grave, steadfast
Clothes of gold, and satins rich of hue.
That widewhere
sent their spicery,                    to distant parts
Their chaffare
was so thriftly* and so new,      wares advantageous
That every wight had dainty* to chaffare
              pleasure deal
With them, and eke to selle them their ware.

Now fell it, that the masters of that sort
Have *shapen them
to Rome for to wend,           determined, prepared
Were it for chapmanhood* or for disport,                        trading
None other message would they thither send,
But come themselves to Rome, this is the end:
And in such place as thought them a vantage
For their intent, they took their herbergage.
                  lodging

Sojourned have these merchants in that town
A certain time as fell to their pleasance:
And so befell, that th' excellent renown
Of th' emperore's daughter, Dame Constance,
Reported was, with every circumstance,
Unto these Syrian merchants in such wise,
From day to day, as I shall you devise
                          relate

This was the common voice of every man
"Our emperor of Rome, God him see
,                 look on with favour
A daughter hath, that since the the world began,
To reckon as well her goodness and beauty,
Was never such another as is she:
I pray to God in honour her sustene
,                           sustain
And would she were of all Europe the queen.

"In her is highe beauty without pride,
And youth withoute greenhood
or folly:        childishness, immaturity
To all her workes virtue is her guide;
Humbless hath slain in her all tyranny:
She is the mirror of all courtesy,
Her heart a very chamber of holiness,
Her hand minister of freedom for almess
."                   almsgiving

And all this voice was sooth, as God is true;
But now to purpose
let us turn again.                     our tale
These merchants have done freight their shippes new,
And when they have this blissful maiden seen,
Home to Syria then they went full fain,
And did their needes
, as they have done yore,     *business *formerly
And liv'd in weal; I can you say no more.                   *prosperity

Now fell it, that these merchants stood in grace
                favour
Of him that was the Soudan
of Syrie:                            Sultan
For when they came from any strange place
He would of his benigne courtesy
Make them good cheer, and busily espy
                          inquire
Tidings of sundry regnes
, for to lear
                 realms learn
The wonders that they mighte see or hear.

Amonges other thinges, specially
These merchants have him told of Dame Constance
So great nobless, in earnest so royally,
That this Soudan hath caught so great pleasance
               pleasure
To have her figure in his remembrance,
That all his lust
, and all his busy cure
,            pleasure *care
Was for to love her while his life may dure.

Paraventure in thilke* large book,                                 that
Which that men call the heaven, y-written was
With starres, when that he his birthe took,
That he for love should have his death, alas!
For in the starres, clearer than is glass,
Is written, God wot, whoso could it read,
The death of every man withoute dread.
                           doubt

In starres many a winter therebeforn
Was writ the death of Hector, Achilles,
Of Pompey, Julius, ere they were born;
The strife of Thebes; and of Hercules,
Of Samson, Turnus, and of Socrates
The death; but mennes wittes be so dull,
That no wight can well read it at the full.

This Soudan for his privy council sent,
And, *shortly of this matter for to pace
,          to pass briefly by
He hath to them declared his intent,
And told them certain, but* he might have grace             &
ve  Oct 2013
nuit blanche
ve Oct 2013
downtown Toronto
you left me there, last week
I walked expecting you to follow me, I didn't turn around
finally I turned, you were gone
I was lost,
stranded in a wave of people
looking for art

the drunk and high teens walking around for who knows what
causing ruckus and yelling wherever they went
you left me amongst the young and old artists
the photographers, writers, sculpters, you name it
you left me amongst the old lovers enjoying themselves
you left me amongst the smell of cigarettes, marijuana, **** and *****
and I can't believe it
you actually left

you left me on the corner of King and Yonge
I was lost, downtown Toronto
no where to go
I sat down on the curb of a hotel
A couple tried to help me
tried to get me somewhere safe
your hotel room?
no, absolutely not
she was hot, but that's illegal
I'm not legal
and I'm not dumb

I was scared and alone
is that what the homeless felt like?
I saw so many people walk by
no one with good intentions stopped
I didn't look homeless, I know that
kids stopped to stare at me and they'd tug on their parents clothes
...they kept walking

I had to reach out to my exboyfriend
I had to get him to meet with me again
He liked the packed streets of downtown
it's where he belongs
with that stupid skateboard he's left me for so many times
but it's his passion, I understand
He was in his nature, I was lost

"Meet up with me please, I'm scared
I don't know where I am"

I started walking
     I had to ***
          He found me

But it wasn't him anymore

He
Was
So
Cold

he screamed
"why did you leave me?"
true story
maybe I was the one who left

— The End —