One Night I Lay, by Charles Baudelaire (trans. Darkmoon)

One night I lay next to a hideous whore
like a corpse cuddling a rotting cadaver.
Then I began dreaming of a far more
attractive female. Wow, how I fancied her!

I began picturing this lady’s noble air
of command. The cool authority of
her eye. The perfumed helmet of her hair.
Such hot thoughts!  Jeeze, I’m all steamed up for love!

Lady, I’d like to cover you with kisses!
Wild kisses! Are you ready for caresses
from head to foot, my charming chickadee?

If only, cruel temptress, you could try
to melt the glacier in your icy eye!
No? You mean you can’t spare a tear for me?

12 thoughts to “One Night I Lay, by Charles Baudelaire (trans. Darkmoon)”

  1. I dreamed I saw three demi-gods who in a cafe sat
    And one was small and fat, and one was large and fat:
    And one was eaten up with vice and verminous at that.
    The first he spoke of secret sins, and gems and perfumes rare
    And velvet cats and courtesans voluptiously fair:
    “Who is the sybarite?” I asked. They answered, Beaudelaire.
    The second talked in tapestries, by fanatasy beguiled
    As frail as bubbles, hard as gems, his pageantries he piled;
    “This Lord of Language who is he?” They whispered Oscar Wilde.
    The third was staring at his glass from out abysmal pain
    With tears his eyes were bitten in beneath his bulbous brain.
    “Who is this sodden wretch? ” I asked, they told me Paul Verlaine.
    Oh, Wilde, Verlaine and Beauderlaire, their lips were wet with wine
    Oh poseur, pimp and libertine! Oh cynic, sot and swine!

    1. Brilliant! Thank you for this priceless gem, Reader. For sheer lushness of language and extravaganza of the “dark” emotions, this parody of the Decadent poets is hard to beat.

      It reminds me of Swinburne’s unforgettable couplet:

      The lilies and languors of virtue
      The roses and raptures of vice.

  2. Once (or twice) upon a time I did indeed dance like a marvelous dog, for a woman.

    Not lately though! (haha)

  3. a somewhat deep content, no?

    he wants to trade an ugly whore for a better looking whore.

    only a poet could set his sights so impossibly high.

  4. Off topic ….Xanadu/Lasha, I believe you are a Catholic. If so, an essay on the enlightening Teilhard de Chardin would be welcome.

    1. Nothing is off topic, dear “Reader”.

      As my shrink once said to me when I apologized to him for some irrelevant remark, “Everything is relevant, dear girl, especially the irrelevant.”

      I adored that, particularly the emphasis on “especially”. 🙂

    2. If you are interested in reading an essay on Teilhard de Chardin — he is a person I know very little about — why don’t you write one yourself and submit it to me for publication? I know who you are and am well-disposed toward you, so I would seriously consider publishing anything you sent me. You have my address.

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