les fleurs du mal

have you ever read a better description of that urge to flee somewhere beautiful, where the cares of the world don’t exist: “see the ships sleeping on the canals, in a vagabond mood. they have come from the ends of the earth to satisfy your least desire. setting suns cover the fields, the canals, the whole city, with hyacinth and gold . . . there all is order and beauty, calm, luxuriousness, and exquisite delight.” -Baudelaire, L’Invitation au Voyage.

chardon marie

autignac, france

  • Sylvia says:

    Amazing what a good translator can conjure….poor Cyril Scott, whose version currently inhabits my bookcase, was not up to the task.

    • You must never tell this to my husband, who already hears too often from our neighbors that he “speaks very well, the French.” But he was the impromptu translator of that passage at about 11:00 at night, after a couple of glasses of wine. Someday I will tell him what you said, and it will make him inordinately happy.


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