"Under a stricken sky""The twin goddesses, Force and Grace""Trembling like a soul in pain"
|"The black hearses of my dreams"|
|"A smile not ever, neither do I weep"|
My only experience with the French novel up to the point of my discovery of Baudelaire was a Humanities course I took in college (1978!), called “The French Novel.” I had heard it was easy – read six novels and give an oral presentation at the end of the semester. The course description was accompanied by the two most beautiful words in the English language: “No tests.” A cake course, I thought.
|"The tomb is hungry"|
|"The sacred holocaust of your first flowers"|
When you learn more about something (like cemeteries, for instance), you typically become more comfortable with the idea. Not so with deSade's work. And maybe not so with Baudelaire's, either. So why read such dark literature? Other than providing witty titles for artwork, what other purpose can it serve? Filmaker/author John Waters points out a possible benefit to all of us: "No one ever committed a crime while reading a book!"
Long in the Tooth on MySpace
Books by the Marquis deSade: