Album called ‘Zutique’



Drunken Coachman

FR: Cocher Ivre



drinks: mother-of-pearls

sees: bitter law (of gravity?),

carriage falls!

Woman tumbles,

loin bleeds:

whimpers. Outcry!




Young Greedyguts

FR: Jeune Goinfre


Cap of silk moiré, little wand of ivory,

Clothes very dark.

Paul watches the cupboard,

sticks out little tongue at pear,

Prepares, gives a poke, and squitters.





FR: Paris


Al Godillot, Gambier, Galopeau,

Wolf-Pleyel – O Robinets! –

Menier, – O Chirsts! – Leperdriel!

Kinck, Jacob, Bonbonnel!

Veuillot, Tropmann, Augier!

Gill, Mendes, Manuel, Guido Gonin! –

Basket of the Graces! L’Herisse!

Unctuous waxes!

Old loaves, spirits!

Blind men! –

but then who knows? –

Beadles, Enghien. –

In one’s own home!

Let’s be Christian!




The Old Guard

FR: Vieux de la vieille


To the emperor’s peasants!

To the peasants’ emperor!

To the sons of mars,

to the glorious 18 March!

When heaven blessed

the guts of Eugene!




Lips Sealed

FR: Les Lèvres closes


(Seen in Rome)

There is in Rome at the Sistine,

covered with Christian emblems,

a little scarlet skullcap in which

ancient noses lie drying:

noses of Thebaid ascetics,

noses of canons of the Holy Grail,

in which leaded-hued night coagulated,

and the old sepulchral plainchant.

In their mystic desiccation every morning

there is poured schimatic filth

reduced to a fine powder.

Leon Dierx




FR: Fête galante



Scapin tickles a rabbit under his coat.

Columbine –

who got fucked –

Do, mi – strums

On the rabbit’s eye which soon,

losing control, gets tipsy.

Paul Verlaine



The Accursed Cherub

FR: L’Angelot maudit


Bluish roofs and white doors

As on nocturnal Sundays,

At the town’s end,

the road without Sound is white,

and it is night.

The street has strange houses

With shutters of angels.

But look how he runs towards a Boundary-stone,

evil and shivering, A dark cherub who staggers,

Having eaten too many jububes.

He does a cack : then disappears :

But his cursed cack appears,

Under the holy empty moon,

A slight cesspool of dirty blood !

Louis Ratisbonne




FR: Lys


O see-saws! O Lilies!

Enemas of silver!

Disdainful of labours,

disdainful of famines!

Dawn fills you with

a [wound-searching,] cleansing love!

A heavenly sweetness

butters your stamens!

Armand Silvestre



Humanity was lacing…

FR: L’Humanité chaussait..


Humanity was lacing the shoes of the vast infant Progress.

Louis-Xavier de Ricard
Arthur Rimbaud



Memories of Feeble-minded Old Man

FR: Remembrances du vieillard idiot


Forgiveness, Father!

When I was young, at country fairs, I sought, not the dull shooting gallery where every shot wins, but the place full of shouts where donkeys, with weary flanks, display that long bloody tube which I still do not understand!

… And then my mother… whose shift had a bitter odour although it was ragged at the hem and yellow as a fruit; my mother, who climbed into bed with a noise – which was, all the same, a son of toil – my mother with her ripe woman’s thigh, with her fat rump where the linen makes a fold – gave me heats of the kind one does not talk about.

A cruder and calmer shame was when my little sister, coming back from school, having worn her clogs down for a long time one the ice, would piss, and watch escaping from her nether lip, tight and pink, a fragile thread of urine…!

O forgiveness!… I used to think of my father sometimes: in the evening, the card game, and the bawdiest words; our neighbour, and myself whom they thrust aside; things seen … – for a father is disturbing! – and things imagined! … His knee, sometimes apt to fondle; his trousers whose fly my finger wanted to open… – Oh no! – To have the thick dark hard bit of my father, whose hairy hand rocked me!…

I don’t want to speak of the pot, the dish with the handle, glimpsed in the attic; the almanacs covered with red, and the basket of lint, and the Bible, and the latrines, and the servant girl; the Holy Virgin and the crucifix…

Oh! no on was so often disturbed, as if astounded! And now, so that forgiveness may be granted me: since the infected senses have made me their victims, I make my confession of the crimes of my youth!…


And besides! – may I be permitted to speak to the Lord! – why puberty tardily come, and why the pain of the obstinate and too-much-consulted glans? Why the shadow so slow at the base of the belly? and these numberless terrors which bury joy as if under black gravel?

Myself, I have always been stupefied! What is there to know?


Forgiven? … kneel again on the blue hassock, Father. O that childhood! … – and let us jerk our tails off!

François Coppée



Old Coppées

FR: Vieux Coppée


On summer evenings, under the

burning eye of the shopfronts, when the sap

simmers under the dark gratings

which radiate form the foot

of the slender chestnut trees;

outside those dark groups of

joyful or home-loving people,

suckers of cutty pipes or kissers of cigars,

in the narrow kiosk half of the stone

into which I stray – while above me glows

an Ibled advertisement

– I muse how winter will congeal Tibet

with sounding clean water,

lulling the human swell

– and how the bitter north wind

spares not one vein.

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud

To the bedside books, books of serene art;

Obermann and Genlis, Vert-vert and

the Lectern, I hope, when old age

at last has come, and I am indifferent

to boring preposterous novelties,

to ass the treatise of Doctor Venetti.

Disillusioned [,then] with stupefied public,

I shall be able to appreciate the

old-fashioned charm of the illustrations.

Writer and engravers have gilded

the sexual miseries, and it is stimulating,

is it not: DR VENETTI, Treatise on Conjugal Love.

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud

I was occupying a third-class carriage:

an old priest took out a cutty pipe and

put his very calm forehead with

faded hairs out of the window, towards the breezes.

Then this Christian, braving impolite jests,

turning, made the energetic and

at the same time sad request to me

of a little pinch of caporal

– having once been chaplain-in-chief

to a royal scion condemned for the second time

– in order to ease the boredom of a tunnel,

dark vein which opens to travellers

at pré-Soissons, a town in Aisne.

I prefer without a doubt in the spring

the suburban cafe, where the branches

of the dwarf chestnut trees break into leaf

towards the narrow common, in the month of May.

Young dogs, often scolded,

come near the Drinkers to trample down

the hyacinths of the flower-bed.

And until the hyacinth evenings,

on the slate table where in the year 1720

a deacon engraved his Latin nickname,

thin as an inscription on a church window,

there’s the splutter of the black bottles

that never makes them drunk.

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud



State of Siege

FR: Etat de siège


The poor omnibus driver under the tin canopy,

warming a huge chilblain inside his glove,

follows his heavy omnibus along the left bank,

and from his inflated groin thrusts away the moneybag.

And while [in the] soft shadow

where there are policemen,

the respectable interior of the bus looks at the moon

in the deep sky rocking

among its green cotton wool,

in spite of the Edict

and the still delicate hour,

and the fact that the bus is

returning to the Odeon,

the lewd wanton utters piercing cries

at the darkened square!

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud




FR: Ressouvenir


The year when the imperial Prince was born

has left me a generously comforting memory

of a limpid Paris where N’s of gold and

snow at the palace gates and on the

mounting-blocks burst out,

beribboned in tricolour.

In the swirl of crowds, and the songs

of old workmen in the dining-rooms;

on the strewn shawls the Emperor walks,

neat and black, with the Sanctified

Spanish-woman, in the evening.

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud



The ball-boy, the Prepubescent, in whose veins…

FR: L’enfant qui ramassa les balles…


The ball-boy, the Pubescent, in whose veins

flows the blood of exile and of an illustrious Father,

feels his life springing up with the hope

of his face and his figure, and wishes to

see different curtains from those of

the Throne and the Crib; besides, his exquisite

head and shoulders do not aspire to storm

the breachers of the Future! – He has left the

old plaything – O his sweet dream!

O his fine Enghien!* His eye is deepened

by some enormous solitude: ‘Poor young man,

he has no doubt acquired the Habit of it!”

Because ‘Enghien in your own home’!

François Coppée
A. Rimbaud