Jules Laforgue

3 Translations with Notes: Laforgue, Soupault

Jules Laforgue and Phillip Soupault are two poets with very little in common, especially when considering the early period of the former. Laforgue’s early work relentlessly circulates around an unremitting metaphysical anguish (the poet himself would refer to his ‘poèmes philo’), a sort of bent continuation of the Romanticism of a Lamartine, with the difference that if in Lamartine nature, rich as it is, is a site of absence, for the young Laforgue it is patent that nature has already kicked the bucket – so there are no verdant dales through which one might wander while pondering the retreat of the absolute: no site of retreat and meditation remains.

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