August 28, 2007
The Retort of the Albatross

Souvent, pour s'amuser, les hommes d'équipage
Prennent des albatros, vastes oiseaux des mers,
Qui suivent, indolents compagnons de voyage,
Le navire glissant sur les gouffres amers.

À peine les ont-ils déposés sur les planches,
Que ces rois de l'azur, maladroits et honteux,
Laissent piteusement leurs grandes ailes blanches
Comme des avirons traîner à côté d'eux.

Ce voyageur ailé, comme il est gauche et veule!
Lui, naguère si beau, qu'il est comique et laid!
L'un agace son bec avec un brûle-gueule,
L'autre mime, en boitant, l'infirme qui volait!

Le Poète est semblable au prince des nuées
Qui hante la tempête et se rit de l'archer;
Exilé sur le sol au milieu des huées,
Ses ailes de géant l'empêchent de marcher.

— Charles Baudelaire —

Albatross1.JPG

Webding3.jpg

Posted by Buck Batard at August 28, 2007 07:04 AM
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No, I think he has it backwards. It's the vulnerability on land that motivates the soaring.

Posted by: Martha Bridegam on August 29, 2007 11:38 AM

You're onto something there, Martha. It was our vulnerability on land that led us to take the coward's way out by bombing the shit out of Vietam. Now we're doing the same thing in Afghanistan and Iraq. As has been the case since the first major use of air power to bomb civilians (the Brits in Iraq in the 20's, I think it was), what we laughingly call "precision bombing," or "smart bombs" is basically terrorism aimed at the civilian population.

Posted by: Aitch Jay on August 30, 2007 12:03 PM

Actually I meant that people become writers because they're misfits as people. Like, the Beach Boys never would have had time to write a lyric like

"...We always take my car 'cause it can't be beat
And we always hit it off with the chicks we meet..."

if it were true, would they?

But whatever.

Posted by: Martha Bridegam on September 2, 2007 5:45 PM
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