China Mieville and the Misbegot: Monsters, Magic, and Marxism
In Flowers of Evil, Charles Baudelaire includes "Comes the Charming Evening," also the last poem in an edition of Paris Spleen. Baudelaire says, "Comes the charming evening, the criminal's friend, / Comes conspirator-like on soft wolf tread. / Like a large alcove the sky slowly closes, / And man approaches his bestial metamorphosis." Forthwith, I crisscross multiple poets, critical theorists, such as Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno, Roland Barthes, Gilles Deleuze and Felix Gauttari, Helene Cixous, Anne Carson, also Fredric Jameson, but preeminently Ernst Bloch. With spleen, with hope for a world of flourishing flowers, I re-write (among others) Baudelaire: "Comes the charming evening, the villain's friend, / Comes conspirator-like on soft wolf tread. / Like a large alcove the sky suddenly opens, / and woman approaches her bestial metamorphosis." Baudelaire concludes with a sentiment I'll not alter, except for the word "hearth," which can do without its last letter: "Indeed, many a one has never even known / The heart's warm charm. Pity such a one" (Paris 116-117).
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Preceding His Famous Confessional
Mark This Mieville
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