Maldoror and Poems (Penguin Classics) by Comte de Lautréamont

By Comte de Lautréamont

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Man eats nourishing substances and makes other efforts, worth of a better fate, to appear huge. Let him puff himself out as much as he wishes, this adorable frog. Set your mind at rest, he will not equal you in size; at least, I suppose not. I hail you, old ocean! Old ocean your waters are bitter. Their taste is the same as the rancorous gall which criticism distills and pours on the arts, the sciences, everything. If someone is a genius, it condemns him as an idiot; if another has a beautiful body, then he is a frightful hunchback.

Some even assert that love has reduced him to this state; or that these cries testify to his repentance at some crime buried in the night of his mysterious past. ’ I hear in the distance prolonged cries of the most acute pain. ‘My son, these are exceptional confidences. ’ ‘That is good, my son. ’ The groans can no longer be heard. ’ ‘And I have not yet finished my chapter. ’ ‘Radiant angle, come to me. You will walk through meadows from morning to evening; you will no have to work. My palace is built of silver walls, gold columns, and diamond doors.

Could a stone escape from the laws of gravity? Impossible. Impossible, for evil to form an alliance with good. That is what I was saying in the above lines. 4 There are those whose purpose in writing is, by means of the noble qualities of heart which their imagination invents or which they themselves may have, to seek the plaudits of other human beings. For my part, I use my genius to depict the delights of cruelty: delights which are not transitory or artificial; but which began with man and will end with him.

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