Wednesday, 8 April 2009
Baudelaire - Any Takers?
It's Baudelaire's birthday today - happy 188th, Charlot! It's a long time since I read him, and I must admit I feel little inclination to return to his work. Is it just me, or is there something faintly absurd about all that self-conscious, overwrought 'decadence'? Yet he was certainly, as T.S. Eliot noted, a fine craftsman... I don't know, I think in the end - like so much of literary taste - it's a matter of mood. Baudelaire suited the mood of my younger self, always eager for a morbid thrill - dammit, I even read Maldoror - but that was then... Still, any excuse for a Nadar photograph. Even more remarkable is the one of Gerard de Nerval.