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1. Arthur Rimbaud: Complete Works
2. Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected
3. I Promise to Be Good: The Letters
4. Rimbaud: Poems (Everyman's Library
5. Somebody Else: Arthur Rimbaud
6. Arthur Rimbaud
7. Rimbaud Complete (Modern Library
8. Arthur Rimbaud: Presence of an
9. Selected Poems and Letters (Penguin
10. Rimbaud: The Cost of Genius
11. A Season in Hell and The Drunken
12. Collected Poems (Oxford World's
13. A Study of Theatrical Vision in
14. Time of the Assassins a Study
15. Illuminations (Picas Series)
16. The Drunken Boat & Other Poems
17. Rimbaud: The Double Life of a
18. Rimbaud: A Biography
19. Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected
20. Poésies Complètes (French Edition)

1. Arthur Rimbaud: Complete Works (P.S.)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 400 Pages (2008-07-01)
list price: US$14.99 -- used & new: US$6.19
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061561770
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

One of the world's most influential poets, Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) is remembered as much for his volatile personality and tumultuous life as he is for his writings, almost all of which he produced before the age of twenty. Paul Schmidt's acclaimed collection brings together his complete poetry, prose, and letters, including "The Drunken Boat," "The Orphans' New Year," "After the Flood," and "A Season in Hell." Complete Works is divided into eight "seasons"—Childhood, the Open Road, War, the Tormented Heart, the Visionary, the Damned Soul, a Few Belated Cowardices, and the Man with the Wind at His Heels—that reflect the facets of Rimbaud's life. Insightful commentary by Schmidt reveals the courage, vision, and imagination of Rimbaud's poetry and sheds light on one of the most enigmatic figures in letters.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Just plain BRILLIANT!! Just as I remember reading them long ago. Thought the translation was done well, with some minor liberties. By far my favorite poet of all time, and this book showcases Rimbaud's talent! A bargain for any poetry lover.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Poetry...A Classic Book
An essential book that collects all of Rimbaud's poetry. I thoroughly enjoyed reading each poem and would like to thank Mr.Schdmit for translating the French text to English for those of us who don't speak the language of love. I believe this book contains all of his classic poems, prose and letters that the legendary and doomed poet wrote during his brief literary career. A wonderful book for all lovers of great poetry and for admirers of Rimbaud's uncompromising, daring and original style.

2-0 out of 5 stars No longer necessary, if it ever was
I wrote an earlier review of this edition of Rimbaud back when I called myself lexo-2; I'd now amend it, if I could, to say that the only translations of Rimbaud that non-French speakers are going to need is Wyatt Mason's superb bilingual edition in two volumes for the Modern Library.Schmidt has a lovely turn of phrase, but this is really a collection of poems by Paul Schmidt inspired by the work of Rimbaud, and not in my view a translation at all.

5-0 out of 5 stars controversial translation of a controversial poet
This book was one of the most fundamentally influential books for me as a developing poet. I think it's by far the best translation of Rimbaud, much more enjoyable to read than the Pleide edition, which seems to me outdated. It may be true that Schmidt took some creative license and his translations of these poems may not be as literal or as accurate as others, but his gift for interprettation makes the poems better than in other translations, and that to me is more important than just strict accuracy. When I read these poems, I know I'm reading Rimbaud--the imagery, the atmosphere is all his. It doesn't bother me at all if from time to time the translator must re-position a word here or adjust a phrase there, or even invent an approximate figure-of-speech for one that doesn't exist in English--the main thing is that this translation is compelling and easy to understand and has Rimbaud's poetic style and ideas down to a T.

David Rehak
author of "Poems From My Bleeding Heart"

1-0 out of 5 stars Ugh
Really quite terrible. If one were approaching Rimbaud only to "read some poems" or to enjoy oneself, then this would be an adequate if slightly fey rendering of the texts. But I think Rimbaud has earned a place beside the likes of Dante, Whitman (who I detest) and Blake, as men who are read as much for their person and ideas as for pleasure, and as such deserves the respect of a faithful rendering by the translator. The reader would be better advised to explore either Fowlie's "Complete Poems", Louise Varese's "Season In Hell" & "Illuminations", or Wyatt Mason's "Complete Works", which despite being resolutely inferior to Fowlie's, does display a number of additional poems previously available only in the original French. ... Read more

2. Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected Letters, a Bilingual Edition
by Jean Nicholas Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 496 Pages (2005-11-01)
list price: US$19.00 -- used & new: US$12.26
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0226719774
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

The enfant terrible of French letters, Jean-Nicholas-Arthur Rimbaud (1854-91) was a defiant and precocious youth who wrote some of the most remarkable prose and poetry of the nineteenth century, all before leaving the world of verse by the age of twenty-one. More than a century after his death, the young rebel-poet continues to appeal to modern readers as much for his turbulent life as for his poetry; his stormy affair with fellow poet Paul Verlaine and his nomadic adventures in eastern Africa are as iconic as his hallucinatory poems and symbolist prose.

The first translation of the poet's complete works when it was published in 1966, Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected Letters introduced a new generation of Americans to the alienated genius—among them the Doors's lead singer Jim Morrison, who wrote to translator Wallace Fowlie to thank him for rendering the poems accessible to those who "don't read French that easily." Forty years later, the book remains the only side-by-side bilingual edition of Rimbaud's complete poetic works.

Thoroughly revising Fowlie's edition, Seth Whidden has made changes on virtually every page, correcting errors, reordering poems, adding previously omitted versions of poems and some letters, and updating the text to reflect current scholarship; left in place are Fowlie's literal and respectful translations of Rimbaud's complex and nontraditional verse. Whidden also provides a foreword that considers the heritage of Fowlie's edition and adds a bibliography that acknowledges relevant books that have appeared since the original publication. On its fortieth anniversary, Rimbaud remains the most authoritative—and now, completely up-to-date—edition of the young master's entire poetic ouvre.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

1-0 out of 5 stars Do Not Purchase! Kindle Version Incorrectly Formatted!
I was thrilled to see Fowlie's Rimbaud translations available for the Kindle. Unfortunately, something went completely awry in the conversion process, and the French and English are randomly mixed together. It's completely unreadable. Different poems are even mixed together in some cases. Hopefully the publisher can fix this, as this version is not only a huge disappointment, but a complete waste of money.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing and diverse collection!!
I'm so happy a book like this has been made. We've studied many french poets in my French class and Rimbaud seems to have been one of the most exotic and controversial characters in the canon of French poets that were chosen. I'm excited to begin reading them and discovering the kind of thinker Rimbaud was. That his letters have been attached here as well is just icing on the cake. I like to try and translate the original poems on my own but it's always nice to compare the English version supplied to get a better sense of some of the more difficult, shaded French to English translations.

5-0 out of 5 stars Rimbaud
The book arrived in good condition and in a timely manner.It was a gift.

5-0 out of 5 stars Poetry's Young Genius
In two words - beyond spectacular. Sheer Genius this is not poetry it is magic. Dark Poetry, but sheer poetical genius. Rimbaud is well beyond the league of Verlaine his famous contemporary and friend. How can you leave this book without being touched by the sheer emotion. Here is the poet's cry from the very depth of the human abyss. I can reread Rimbaud endlessly and yet feel spellbound each time.

4-0 out of 5 stars Buy it for the orginal French poems, not the translations
I do not know French well enough to read these poems without their translations. That is where Wallace Fowlie's literal translations often come in handy. The only problem with his translations is that they tend not be very poetic. Often, Fowlie rearranges word order unnecessarily, creating more functional English, but losing some poetic impact. This isn't a big problem since the French text is right there, and one can get a sense of the beauty of the original poem.

Sometimes, though, the translation fails utterly, as in "Le dormeur du val", where Fowlie translates the phrase "chante une riviere / Accrochant follement aux herbes des haillons / D'argent" as "a river sings / Madly catching on the grasses / Silver rags". The sentence in Englsh makes no sense whatsoever, and as I don't know French very well, it took me a long time to realize that Rimbaud was saying the river looked like silver rags on the grass. A little more guidance with the translation would have been appreciated.

All in all, I would recommend this book, as it's the only comprehensive collection of Rimbaud's poems I'm aware of that offers you the French version alongside an English translation. Unless you can read French and will be fine with simply a French version, you should get this book so you will have the original to reference, as you are bound to run into problems with any translation. ... Read more

3. I Promise to Be Good: The Letters of Arthur Rimbaud (Modern Library Classics)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 416 Pages (2004-11-09)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$10.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812970152
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
One of the most written-about literary figures in the past decade, Arthur Rimbaud left few traces when he abandoned poetry at age twenty-one and disappeared into the African desert. Although the dozen biographies devoted to Rimbaud’s life depend on one main source for information—his own correspondence—a complete edition of these remarkable letters has never been published in English. Until now.

A moving document of decline, Rimbaud’s letters begin with the enthusiastic artistic pronouncements of a fifteen-year-old genius, and end with the bitter what-ifs of a man whose life has slipped disastrously away. But whether soapboxing on the essence of art, or struggling under the yoke of self-imposed exile in the desert of his later years, Rimbaud was incapable of writing an uninteresting sentence. As translator and editor Wyatt Mason makes clear in his engaging Introduction, the letters reveal a Rimbaud very different from our expectations. Rimbaud—presented by many biographers as a bohemian wild man—is unveiled as “diligent in his pursuit of his goals . . . wildly, soberly ambitious, in poetry, in everything.”

I Promise to Be Good: The Letters of Arthur Rimbaud is the second and final volume in Mason’s authoritative presentation of Rimbaud’s writings. Called by Edward Hirsch “the definitive translation for our time,” Mason’s first volume, Rimbaud Complete (Modern Library, 2002), brought Rimbaud’s poetry and prose into vivid focus. In I Promise to Be Good, Mason adds the missing epistolary pieces to our picture of Rimbaud. “These letters,” he writes, “are proofs in all their variety—of impudence and precocity, of tenderness and rage—for the existence of Arthur Rimbaud.” I Promise to Be Good allows English-language readers to see with new eyes one of the most extraordinary poets in history.

From the Hardcover edition. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Read
How sad it is that so little is known of Arthur Rimbaud, who is arguably one of the greatest poets to have ever lived.If not for his letters, we would know even less.As it is, these letters give us an autobiographical glimpse into Rimbaud's mind and personality.Wyatt Mason has done a great job here, translating and chronologically organizing this companion piece to his brilliant Rimbaud Complete.I don't know which is more fascinating:That Mason was able to collect so many of Rimbaud's letters, or that the letters still existed after all these years.Clearly his family and acquaintances had an inkling of Rimbaud's importance, and they must have suspected that his artistry would leave an indelible mark on the literary world.

For all its detail, however, the one thing missing from this volume is an appendix of the French text accompanying the English translation - which definitely enhanced Rimbaud Complete.There are a few reproductions of original letters here, as well as some other interesting photographs, but I think the book would have benefited greatly from the same treatment as Wyatt's previous work.I find it odd that he would omit such an important element to this particular publication.A full-scale reproduction of the documents would have been perfect.Barring that, the French text would be most logical.After all, the book is subtitled, The Letters of Arthur Rimbaud.A reader might expect to see more of the letters.

1-0 out of 5 stars Don't you want French poet's letters in French as well?
As usual, the English-speaking American reader is apparently too much of a monophone (let alone Anglophone or, heaven forbid, Francophone) to allow for the original French letters to be included in this abridged and edited publication of Rimbaud from Modern Library. The reader must rely on what appear to be lovely and credible English translations by Wyatt Mason of the French Symbolist poet's letters, but is the reader able to know it for sure? When any reader bothers to read Rimbaud - and no less than his personal letters-the original French text accompanying the English translation should be, ahem, de rigueur [of rigor]. Either wait for a complete French-English presentation of these interesting letters or read right now instead Wallace Fowlie's Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected Letters that includes the French text facing the English translation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Above All . . .
Rimbaud liked to use the phrase, "above all" in many of his early letters, which according to Wyatt Mason is indicative of his imperious personality. As one reads on, Rimbaud's demands serve a desperate purpose: he wants to improve himself through literature, and get out of town.He demands freedom.

There are some 250 letters collected here, some for the first time in English. Of these, only 30 were written during the time when he was writing poetry. This is all that has been found and collected. Additionally, a few photographs Rimbaud took while in Abyssinia are printed, along with others of Africa, including the slick cover photograph of what appears to be Rimbaud and his co-workers in Aden - never before printed as far as I know. Mason's introduction goes a long way to get to the heart of the real vs. the mythical Rimbaud, and he takes to task previous biographers for simultaneously debunking and promoting the Rimbaud myth. He goes on to compare Rimbaud's letters with those of Van Gogh (I would also include Gauguin, for they all lived & wrote in the same years). The main difference of course being that Van Gogh wrote extensively and confessionally about art and life, while Rimbaud only briefly outlined his thoughts on poetry in the so-called "seer letters". Comparing the relative "salaciousness" and quality of the artist's letters, Mason writes: "There is little of that register in Rimbaud's correspondence. Rather, a sober impatience running from first letter to last. And it is the uniqueness of this tone - a relentless striving - that so informs our understanding of Rimbaud, both as poet and trader."

For those readers unacquainted with Rimbaud and hoping for first-hand accounts of his Parisian adventures, his European travels, debauched meetings with other poets and artists, and poetical inspirations they will likely be disappointed in the long run. Those who are familiar with Rimbaud know that once he left for Africa, he stopped writing poetry. He had gained nothing positive from it, and the Verlaine affair probably pushed him over the edge once and for all. And so he sought his riches in "business"; although, quite unordinary, and therefore, interesting business as a trader in the far reaches of the French colonial empire. To enjoy these letters one must be willing to look past Rimbaud the "genius, maudit, child poet", and open their eyes to the "Somebody Else" of Charles Nicholl's 1997 titled biography. Whether or not you already have a collection of Rimbaud's poems, or intend to buy Mason's Volume I "Rimbaud Complete", Volume II: "I Promise to Be Good" is an invaluable counterpart to the poems, and are the sources for many conjectures and "facts" found in the biographies. On the other hand, if you want to stay away from biographies altogether, but still want to get closer to Rimbaud the person than otherwise possible via his sometimes illusive poems, then "I Promise to Be Good" is the most direct way to go. There is a biographical chronology, reprints of his actual handwritten letters, the poems he included as part of the letters, photographs (including the rare, unprinted cover I mentioned above), maps of his travels, and Above All . . . the letters themselves. It doesn't get much more "complete" than this. ... Read more

4. Rimbaud: Poems (Everyman's Library Pocket Poets)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Hardcover: 288 Pages (1994-04-12)
list price: US$13.50 -- used & new: US$4.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 067943321X
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The Everyman's Library Pocket Poets hardcover series is popular for its compact size and reasonable price which does not compromise content. Poems: Rimbaud contains selections from Rimbaud's work, including over 100 poems, selected prose, "Letter to Paul Demeny, May 15, 1871," and an index of first lines. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

1-0 out of 5 stars Silly size
I get the point of these being pocket editions, but I didn't expect it to be so small.

Not sure why you'd want Rimbaud with you at all times, unless you want to keep that fire burning.

Brilliant stuff, Rimbaud, but I'm going to return this and get a bigger edition.

5-0 out of 5 stars Youth can be a season in hell
This is the work of the original, the authentic, the one and only "enfant terrible". A powerful and magical ability to create images at the same time beautiful, repulsive and apocalyptic. The demoniac genius of Rimbaud shows up since his first poems and in his prose, notably the included "A Season in Hell". Rimbaud incarnates rage, suffering, the rebellious nature of every youth who is at the same time intelligent and sensitive. He gives and takes no quarter. He is not a complaining grunge type. He is mad at the gods, and human to the bone. He makes subsequent rock stars look like sissies. He travels dangerous ground and comes through very much alive and kicking. Some of my favorites: "Sun and Flesh", "Ophelie", "Venus Anadyomene", "Sleeping in the Valley", "The Crows", "Seven-year poets", of course the mesmerizing "The Drunken Boat", "What is that for us, my heart" (a dark presage of terrorism), "Memoire", and the wonderful "Comedy of Thirst", which includes these wonderful verses:

Peut-etre un soir m'attends
ou je boirai tranquille
en quelque vieille ville
et mourrai plus content:
puisque je suis patient.

5-0 out of 5 stars Poetry & Prose: An honest vision of a tortured life.
Arthur Rimbaud's Poems and Prose speak a dark truth of life.

Rimbaud does not shield you from the realities of his time or his life. He writes of all the things he encountered as a child, soldier, poet, lover, and vagabond.

His poems are of his youth and his prose are of his life. The poems do not depict a romantic childhood but of one with struggle and cynism that he carried all his life. To read his poems is to experience his youthful assurance that the world was flawed.You will be affected by his dark perception of the world and awed by his realistic and symbolic style.

As for his prose, he writes of a tortured existence and bohemian lifestyle steeped in a wild reality that was his life.

My favorit passages from this book of poems and prose:

"One evening, I sat Beauty in my lap. - And I found her bitter. - And I cursed her." from A Season in Hell

"It is found again. What? Eternity. It is the sea, Gone with the sun." from Eternity

I very much enjoyed this book and thought Rimbaud changed modern poetry and writing and brought us into a new realistic age in writing. He opened the doors for some of the great 20th century writers.

5-0 out of 5 stars A beautiful vision of youth in the mind of a genius
Rimbaud is one of the most impressive poets of all time, never compromising himself to the drudgery of the world around him.If at any point in your life you have begun to feel like a free spirit, readRimbaud's youthful verse and be prepared to percieve life transcedentally. Within his surrealistic vision you will find the vulnerability of weaknesswith thedemonic anger of a pocessed soul. There are poems that stir everyfeeling of what it's like to be young, and free and drunk on the pleasuresof life.A true poet.

5-0 out of 5 stars We are not serious when we are 17...
We are not serious when we are 17...but are we more serious at 18 or later? He was so young, so sensitive; he wanted to find life, find a place, the place.Like Baudelaire, he was searching his own way, but not in a dark state of mind. The keywords to go through his works are: rebellion,youth and innocence...He is sometimes cruel but I think it's to hide his fragility...I like his childish way of creating; direct but full of hidden love he couldn't give.Read him and you'll probably find that we are not serious at 17 , but that although he found himself not serious, he was so intelligent and receptive to world despite his innocence... ... Read more

5. Somebody Else: Arthur Rimbaud in Africa 1880-91
by Charles Nicholl
Paperback: 352 Pages (1999-05-15)
list price: US$20.00 -- used & new: US$13.35
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0226580296
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
In this compelling biography of the infamous author of "A Season in Hell", Nicholl pieces together the story of Rimbaud's life when he turned his back on poetry, France, and fame for a life of wandering in East Africa. 38 halftones. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Charles Nicholl's biographies
Thank you Charles for "illuminating" this mystery man. You give readers such great insight into character and local in your marvelous biographies. "The Lodger" Shakespeare. "Flights of the Mind" Da Vinci and "Somebody Else" Rimbaud are all terrific reads. Orville Stoeber

4-0 out of 5 stars An exciting read on a wilde child who grows up to be a MAN!
This review really answered a lot of questions about Rimbaud, and gave his legend a needed demystification. Put a lot of Rimbaud's poetry into context of a troubled adolescent seeking a father figure, freedom from a domineering mother, and of course alcholism...I for one found Rimbaud's poetry and legend among the cultural elite to be a bore, but his life was very exciting. A good read....

4-0 out of 5 stars A Season in Hell
I've never really appreciated Rimbaud's poetry.Perhaps that's understandable, given that I'm not a linguist and that, for me at least, there's always something a little suspect about poems in translation.This is no doubt my loss.However, I've always liked a good read, and the one about Rimbaud, poet and traveler, who gave up his muse while still in his teens and left Europe for Africa, where he was rumored to be a gun runner and slaver, is a damned good tale.Charles Nicholl, author of "Borderlines" and "The Reckoning: The Murder of Christopher Marlowe,' does it ample justice in his memoir "Somebody Else," subtitled "Arthur Rimbaud in Africa: 1880-1891."Actually, the first quarter or so of the book is given over to the poet's formative years, including his well-documented relationship with Paul Verlaine, the older poet who came under the spell of Arthur's often-violent persona (and strikingly beautiful eyes), regarding him as the quintessential poète maudit.Readers familiar with the Agnieszka Holland film, "Total Eclipse" (1995) may be forgiven for interpolating an image of Leonardo DiCaprio for that of the real Rimbaud, but one look at the Carjat photograph on the cover of Nicholl's book should be enough to set them straight.More reminiscent of Katherine Hepburn in "Sylvia Scarlet" than the ever-wholesome DiCaprio, the photo hauntingly portrays Rimbaud's "hooded frightening eye" and somewhat cruel mouth at age seventeen.But Nicholl is more concerned with the "somebody else," also portrayed on the cover of my Vintage (1998) edition of the book: a Rimbaud self-portrait (the poet briefly took up photography in Harrar), arms folded and wearing a white smock, that has him looking, a year or two shy of thirty, more like a product of Bedlam than Hollywood.This is the man who turned his back on poetry and dedicated himself to exile, settling for eleven years in East Africa, where he developed a single-minded desire to succeed at some aspect of trade.Whether he became a gun runner or slaver (Nicholl is ambivalent on both points, but his apology for slavery as it existed in the late 19th century fails to convince) is still debated, but Rimbaud's early death, at age 37, in 1891, renders the question essentially moot."Somebody Else" is meticulously researched (quotes from later travelers such as Evelyn Waugh and Lawrence Durrell are especially welcome) and a pleasure to read.I recommend it to anyone who wants to learn about the "other" Rimbaud.

3-0 out of 5 stars Fill in the Blanks
Any attempt to chronicle Rimbaud's Africa years is an exercise in filling in the blanks- Rimbaud himself seemed intent on essentially disappearing. Nicholl's work is relatively short, but he manages to extensively mine the archives for the right nuggets. The book is well referenced - (sources are extensive and as complete as they can be), and at times quite poetically written.
Nicholl is thoughtful with his subject and careful to tell us what is fact, what is rumor, and what is his own conjecture. He also gives us a look at what the social and political landscape was at the time of his writing (1997) for the relevant stomping grounds.
Still, it is not an "easy read" due to the complexity of it all- the elusive subject, the many cameos by traders and natives, the deliberate enigma of Rimbaud. Nicholl also pulls passages from A.R.'s poetry to highlight his accidental prescience - fun, but a bit contrived. (Dare I be the first to say that the majority of Rimbaud's poetry is not good? That the minority that stands out is so brilliant that we tolerate the drivel and obscenity in hopes of finding another gem?)
Yet there is a pull to the book, no doubt the same powerful forces that draw us to the work and life of A.R., always pulling us in as he runs faster and farther away.

4-0 out of 5 stars Well-Written, But What A Downer
As another reviwer has already stated, this book will not definitively answer the question that so many lovers of Rimbaud ask. To wit, "Why did he stop writing?"-But the book is a well-researched and well-written account of Rimmbaud as "un autre," somebody else than a poet...But it's all so grindingly depressing.Yes, Rimbaud had incredible endurance and will and courage.But he had no business acumen as the accounts of his many endeavors in the world of commerce amply illustrate.The book is essentially a tale of his slow degeneration in body, if not spirit.-I used to have a friend who loved Rimbaud more than I do who would call me in the middle of the night drunkenly, tearfully asking me why he quit.Well, there was nothing I could say at 3 A. M. that he would remember the next morning.-But what I feel is that the answer lies in Rimbaud's most famous poem, "Le Bateau Ivre."At the end of the poem, he says that, after all the exhilarating and mystical insights, after all the rapturous visions amidst the mad seastorms, there is nothing he would like better now then to return to being a litle boat being pushed across a placid pond by a little boy.Rimbaud had been through more hell in his life by the end of his teens than would fit in the lives of many a tortured soul.-It's really not so remarkable when you consider it that, his poetry unrecognized, his soul tortured by the relationship with Verlaine and the other atrocities and privations he endured that the young man would flee the literary world that had given him nothing but anguish in the end.-Unfortunately , the world to which he fled offered little in the way of compensation, as this book sadly chronicles.I recommend this book to those who, like myself, had no clear idea of exactly what Rimbaud DID after he stopped writing besides vague ideas of his being a gun-runner, slave-trader and amputee (This book, by the way, casts serious doubts over whether he was ever either of the former two, except perhaps when forced to do so by bad luck and necessity).-So, all in all, a sad but informative work.-I still think the last lines of "Le Bateau Ivre" are the key to why he stopped writing.But, as is commmonplace, you can't go home again, as those last lines express a yearning for.This book is an excellent chronicle of the alternative Rimbaud was forced to accept. ... Read more

6. Arthur Rimbaud
by Enid Starkie
Paperback: Pages (1968-06)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$9.90
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 081120197X
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (14)

1-0 out of 5 stars maybe the product is wonderfull, but...
I didn't receive the book. I'm still waiting for it.
The adress is correct, just the delivery isn't.
Wanna buy something? Go to the store.
I'll never buy here again

5-0 out of 5 stars Arthur Rimbaud
I am very happy with it.It was in the condition described.

5-0 out of 5 stars an authoritative biography
Although this is the only Arthur Rimbaud biography I've read, it seems to me very well-written and true to his life. Enid Starkie is perhaps the leading non-French expert scholar on Rimbaud and this long seminal work is very readable and comprehensive. I learned a lot about the life of the man who was one of my favorite poets in my teens. It's amazing when you consider that he wrote all his stuff before he was 20, and that he then suddenly stopped writing altogether. He became lost to literature in his quest to make money and become a successful business man (trader in Africa). One of the most intriguing things in the book is how it talks about "La Chasse Spirituelle" which Verlaine calls Rimbaud's masterpiece, and which has since been lost. I wonder what happened to this work, and it's a great pity that we will never be able to read it. One of the other many things I found interesting was that Rimbaud apparently changed his view on God when he was on his deathbed, as his relgiously devout sister Isabelle pleaded with him to be converted. The cocky and rebellious kid who tried to use alchemy and occult magic to become as powerful as God, who as a 16-year-old punk used to write (...) on the church door, was now in his late 30s a humble, broken, and resigned man who turned to God for comfort and salvation. That may have been important to the fate of his soul, but what is important to us is his written words. And even though Rimbaud only wrote for about 5 years of his life, his contribution to poetry is timeless.


3-0 out of 5 stars The mistakes ofE. Starkie
The Enid Starkie biography is a movingand remarkable work. Nevertheless , it has some serious mistakes that the readers and mainly the lovers of Rimbaud must know. Starkie stained the memory of Rimbaud accusing him of having done slaves traffic. Detailed studies have proved that this was absolutely impossible. (You can read the books of Alain Borer, Graham Robb, Charles Nicholl...)
Starkie wants to show us a rimbaud that failed in Abyssinia. It seems that he deserved a punishment for having left the poetry. The truth is that Arthur Rimbaud was an excellent trader that made a little fortune.
A few moths ago I went to Charleville. There, the Rimbaud's museum has a place where important studies about Rimbaud are shown. In spite of the Starkie's play is very well-known, it has not earned a place there.

5-0 out of 5 stars Classic Literary Biography
Enid Starkie's biography of Rimbaud, published nearly forty years ago, still stands as both the definitive narrative of Rimbaud's life and a model of literary biography.

Rimbaud was a rebellious, enigmatic, brilliant, and inscrutable poet who, in just four short years between the ages of sixteen and twenty, wrote the poetry which has made him a figure of mythic proportions, not only in French literature, but in the literature and history of Modernism. Starkie, in brilliantly lucid prose and with loving attention to every detail, tells Rimbaud's life story and connects that story to the writing of the poems and the evolution of Rimbaud's views on poetry and the task of the poet.

Influenced by his studies of Kabbalah, alchemy and illuminism, and writing in the long shadow of Baudelaire's "Les Fleurs du Mal", Rimbaud precociously enunciated his attack on the then dominant Parnassian school of French poetry at the tender age of sixteen. Starkie examines Rimbaud's original aesthetic doctrine in great detail; in her words, the poet must discover a "new language . . . capable of expressing the ineffable, a new language not bound by logic, nor by grammar or syntax." In Rimbaud's words, the "Poet" must make himself a "seer" by a "long, immense and systematic derangement of all the senses."

From this initial position, Starkie brilliantly details Rimbaud's turbulent relationship with Paul Verlaine and his descent into what one reviewer has aptly described as a "perpetual roister of absinthe, hashish and sodomy." Starkie painstakingly relates Rimbaud's poetry to his experiences with Verlaine in London and Paris. In particular, Starkie convincingly demonstrates, through careful exegesis of the poems and their correspondences with Rimbaud's letters and other biographical materials, that the "Illuminations" (perhaps Rimbaud's most brilliant poems) were written over several years preceding and following "Une Saison en Enfer". Starkie then goes on to demonstrate that the latter prose poems were hardly intended to be Rimbaud's "farewell to literature in general, but only to visionary literature." In other words, "Une Saison en Enfer" represents the rejection by Rimbaud of his original mind-bending iconoclasm--the liquidation "of all his previous dreams and aspirations"--in favor of a rational and materialist aesthetics. Of course, after completing "Une Saison en Enfer", Rimbaud's life moved in completely different directions and there is, unfortunately, no existing evidence that he continued his poetic endeavor after the age of twenty.

Starkie's biography captures the details of the remainder of Rimbaud's life--he died at the age of thirty-seven--with fascinating and attentive detail. And the remainder of his life, as related by Starkie, is a biography in itself--vagabond in Europe, sailor to the East Indies, gun runner and (slave?) trader in Abyssinia, and mysterious cult hero of the emerging French symbolist movement. Indeed, in 1888, more than fourteen years after Rimbaud's known literary career had ended, he received a letter from a prominent Parisian editor: "You have become, among a little coterie, a sort of legendary figure . . . This little group, who claim you as their Master, do not know what has become of you, but hope you will one day reappear, and rescue them from obscurity." Starkie scrutinizes all of these events with scrupulous attention to detail and accuracy.

This is truly a classic of literary biography! (One additional comment: Rimbaud's poetry and letters are quoted extensively in the original French. If you are not fluent in French, you should have Wallace Fowlie's English translation of Rimbaud's Complete Works and Selected Letters by your side as a reference.) ... Read more

7. Rimbaud Complete (Modern Library Classics)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 656 Pages (2003-01-14)
list price: US$18.00 -- used & new: US$9.92
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0375757708
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Enduring icon of creativity, authenticity, and rebellion, and the subject of numerous new biographies, Arthur Rimbaud is one of the most repeatedly scrutinized literary figures of the last half-century. Yet almost thirty years have elapsed without a major new translation of his writings. Remedying this state of affairs is Rimbaud Complete, the first and only truly complete edition of Rimbaud’s work in English, translated, edited, and introduced by Wyatt Mason.

Mason draws on a century of Rimbaud scholarship to choreograph a superbly clear-eyed presentation of the poet’s works. He arranges Rimbaud’s writing chronologically, based on the latest manuscript evidence, so readers can experience the famously teenaged poet’s rapid evolution, from the lyricism of “Sensation” to the groundbreaking early modernism of A Season in Hell.

In fifty pages of previously untranslated material, including award-winning early verses, all the fragmentary poems, a fascinating early draft of A Season in Hell, a school notebook, and multiple manuscript versions of the important poem “O saisons, ô chateaux,” Rimbaud Complete displays facets of the poet unknown to American readers. And in his Introduction, Mason revisits the Rimbaud myth, addresses the state of disarray in which the poet left his work, and illuminates the intricacies of the translator’s art.

Mason has harnessed the precision and power of the poet’s rapidly changing voice: from the delicate music of a poem such as “Crows” to the mature dissonance of the Illuminations, Rimbaud Complete unveils this essential poet for a new generation of readers.

From the Hardcover edition. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (20)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Definitive Collection of Rimbaud
Wyatt Mason has put together what is arguably the most concise volume of Rimbaud's work.It's all here; the poems that made him famous, as well as his lesser-known pieces.It's exhausting to imagine the amount of time and energy that must have gone into collecting all this information.The translations are, from all accounts, spot-on.And for those devotees to the craft, Mason has also included the original French texts for anyone interested in reading Rimbaud's poetry as it was written.If you're a lover of Rimbaud, you'll love this book.

1-0 out of 5 stars Horrible- not a very quality translation
As discerned from introductory college courses upon encountering foreign language books, translation is all. Sadly out of the multitude of Rimbaud's works translated to English this is among the worst I have seen. I strongly recommend:
by Arthur Rimbaud, Oliver Bernard (Translator)
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
Pub. Date: April 1987
ISBN-13: 9780140420647

, if you desire a pleasant translation for a fair price. I would personally throw this Wyatt Mason translation at Wyatt Mason had I the wherewithal as opposed to lethargy to do so, and if such was indeed a warranted action. Please do not waste money on his rendition. I know non-French selection for Rimbaud is tough, in fact many of the translated works are so starkly different that sometimes one poem translates 10 different ways, but Wyatt's is dull, with very toilsome language (not verbose so much as mediocre). If I had read Wyatt's version first I would have thought lesser of a brilliant poet than I should have, and that revisionism of reputation itself divests this book of all stature. Sorry for the length. Normally I never review any purchase I make, but this book was of such startlingly low quality I remember it even 2 years after. Just horrible. This book is a testament to why we must be prudent in purchase of translated works, and also why there is a secondary resale market for undesirable goods.

2-0 out of 5 stars Great Idea, Horribly Boring Translation
The complete works of Arthur Rimbaud is a truly a treasure to have and a necessity to the library of any lover of the poetic form. Unfortunately, in this collection Wyatt Mason renders Rimbaud sterile of all the visceral poetic beauty his works possess and reduces it to a modernized, lifeless and hum drum banality that does it a great disservice. Do yourself a favor and get Louise Varese's beautifully magisterial versions of A Season In Hell and Illuminations and if you want more go with Wallace Fowlie's translations for all the odds and ends and a more faithfully literal translation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Before Beat and Surrealism
Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) was a French poet who experimented with many verse structures at an early age. Always interested in the theme of liberty, Rimbaud's work challenged the boundaries of traditional poetic expression. Wyatt Mason, the translator of the poet's work in Rimbaud Complete (2003), wrote a wonderful description of Rimbaud's style. "And the poems - vessels of indeterminacy, ambiguity and frequently strange beauty - are easily disfigured by a blunt critical blade." Reading this description, the reader can understand the popularity of the poet's work with the "Beat" generation and the surrealists. Much of the work translated by Mason is reminiscent of Alan Ginsberg's beat poem "Howl" and Andre Breton's surrealist novel, Nadja.

Mason's translation is an attempt to remain true to the French but also help the reader experience Rimbaud's images with contemporary English expressions. This process produces art that is very different from other translations of the poet's work. The reader has to be open to free association of images, tangential emotions, and surprising personal reactions. Later, this would be the `stuff' of Kerouac, Kesey, Burroughs, Ginsberg, Breton, Genet and others.

I read the book with frequent surprising flights of fancy that I scribbled in the margins of the book. This is the best way to stay in tune with Rimbaud who I believe meant his work to produce such reader reaction. Of course, he meant the work for the few free spirits who might someday chuck it all and hit the road as he did. Timothy Leary's infamous line, "Tune in, turn on, drop out" captures the insightful reader's approach to the work of Arthur Rimbaud.

2-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Content - Unpleasant Translation
The book contains the complete works of Arthur Rimbaud in chronological order, in both English and French. There is an excellent short introduction to Rimbaud, along with a very nice explanation of the translation process, and the difficulties inherent in translating poetry.

Sadly, the translations presented in this volume do a grave injustice to Rimbaud. In his efforts to render an accurate contemporary translation, Mason removes nearly every vestige of poetic rhythm and rhyme from his poems. Even though my French is inadequate to enjoy Rimbaud in his original language, I found myself turning frequently to the French versions of the poems, as I tried to understand how a poet of Rimbaud's reputation could possibly write so poorly. In poem after poem, the French version was more readable than Mason's translation even though I could only understand about a third of what I read.

I ended up exchanging the book for a version translated by Paul Schmidt, which was much more readable. Ironically, Mason offers criticism of Schmidt's translation in his book.

While this book might be a worthwhile addition to the library of someone already familiar with Rimbaud, I would recommend that any person seeking an introduction to his poetry look elsewhere for a translation. ... Read more

8. Arthur Rimbaud: Presence of an Enigma
by Jean-Luc Steinmetz
Paperback: 480 Pages (2002-08-25)
list price: US$20.00 -- used & new: US$10.92
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Asin: 1566492513
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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From the enigmatic poet's very first writings to his life as a wandering trader in Arabia and Harar, Jean-Luc Steinmetz delivers here the first biography which, rather than dividing Rimbaud's life in two halves, brings out the spiritual and logical continuity underlying his 36-year long pursuit of desire> ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars La Figlia Che Piange

This is the motherlode.As of this moment there is a French tri-colour upon the pinnacle...the very tip of the iceberg in that chaos of polar ice and night which is Rimbaud at his best.I read all Rimbaud scholarship, and I haven't missed a thing of note for the past 35 years, and I give the nod to Mssr. Steinmetz for achivement becoming a "genie" of synpathetic understanding and scholarly rigour.There will always be need for more on Rimbaud, and just because this book is the greatest so far...I implore you...still read it all beginning with Isabel and her husband, and Delahaye up until this day March 2, 2006.It is the Greatest Story Ever Told.No serious person should miss it. "By the brother's boot it stinks fresh."

4-0 out of 5 stars The enigma of presence
The presence of an enigma, the enigma of presence: The Steinmetz book oscillates between these two poles, revealing one as it obscures the other, before begining the process over again. A clarifying agent -- yes, certainly; the culmination of decades of research -- no doubt. Authoritative, provocative, at times compelling, Steinmetz has returned to us the challenge of a poet and a man that we continue to face, facing ourselves as we do so. And this, I believe, is the final worth of this book. Mirror and lens, it reflects and refracts as much as we care to give into it; as much as we care to take the challenge of Rimbaud seriously for our place and our time. ... Read more

9. Selected Poems and Letters (Penguin Classics)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 576 Pages (2005-02-22)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$7.31
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Asin: 0140448020
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Arthur Rimbaud was one of the wildest, most uncompromising poets of his age, although his brief literary career was over by the time he was twenty-one when he embarked on a new life as a trader in Africa. This edition brings together his extraordinary poetry and more than a hundred of his letters, most of them written after he had abandoned literature. A master of French verse forms, the young Rimbaud set out to transform his art, and language itself, by a systematic "disordering of all the senses," often with the aid of alcohol and drugs. The result is a highly innovative, modern body of work, obscene and lyrical by turns—a rigorous journey to extremes.

Jeremy Harding and John Sturrock’s new translation includes Rimbaud’s greatest verse, as well as his record of youthful torment, A Season in Hell (1873), and letters that unveil the man who turned his back on poetry. ... Read more

10. Rimbaud: The Cost of Genius
by Neal Oxenhandler
Hardcover: 232 Pages (2009-06-01)
list price: US$42.95 -- used & new: US$34.87
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Asin: 0814210546
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Living during the chaotic period between the end of the Second Empire and the early years of the Third Republic, Arthur Rimbaud would become the genius of French literary modernism, surpassing even Baudelaire. But at what cost? In his poems and letters he reveals the devastating rigors of his relationships with others as well as his power as creator and thinker. Neal Oxenhandler employs psychocritical strategies to penetrate the secrets of a man who was one of the greatest literary figures of his century. For each poem Rimbaud wrote he paid a price in suffering, in jealousy, and in misunderstanding. Eventually the price for his gift rose so high that he had no alternative except to abandon poetry while still in his mid-twenties.
Rimbaud: The Cost of Genius analyzes twenty-one major poems, showing the poet’s development during the ten years (1869–1879), when he was actively writing. It offers new solutions to the “joke” or “trick” poems, such as “H” and “Conte.” It also deals with the poet’s confinement in the Babylone barracks during the Commune, envisioned in the enigmatic poem, “Le Coeur du pitre.” In the last chapter, Oxenhandler studies how sublimation is achieved in “Une Saison en enfer” through the rhetorical trope of chiasmus.
The book concludes with a personal “Appendix” that seeks to penetrate the mystery surrounding Rimbaud’s death in the Conception Hospital in Marseilles on November 10, 1891, at the age of thirty-seven.
... Read more

11. A Season in Hell and The Drunken Boat
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 104 Pages (1961-01-17)
list price: US$10.95 -- used & new: US$5.71
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Asin: 0811201856
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The classic influential poems by Rimbaud, in a bilingual en face edition featuring acclaimed translations by Louise Varése.

Although he stopped writing at the age of nineteen, Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) possessed the most revolutionary talent of the past hundred years, and his poetry and prose have increasingly influenced the major writers of our century. To his masterpiece A Season in Hell is here added Rimbaud's longest and possibly greatest single poem The Drunken Boat, with the original French en faceIlluminations, Rimbaud's major works are available as bilingual New Directions Paperbooks.

The reputation of A Season in Hell, which is a poetic record of a man's examination of his own depths, has steadily increased over the years. Upon the first publication of Mrs. Varese's translation by New Directions, the Saturday Review wrote: "One may at last suggest that the translation of A Season in Hell has reached a conclusive point..." Concerning the twenty-five-stanza The Drunken Boat, Dr. Enid Starkie of Oxford University has written: "(It is) an anthology of separate lines of astonishing evocative magic which linger in the mind like isolated jewels." Rimbaud's life was so extraordinary that it has taken on the quality of a myth. A biographical chronology is included in this book.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Definitive translation of the definitive poem
For those who wish to come closest to the essence of the poet's passions - his desires and dispositions, his ambitions and disappointments, prophesies, philosophies, cultural commentaries, his romance and self-deprecating humor, his music - this is the poem with which to begin, and this is the translation. In a sense, when I refer to "the poet" I am referring to all poets, because among them all Rimbaud may be the most sincere, most completely open, and least marked by pretense. He may be the most genuine poet we have read, and Season in Hell may be the most genuine of his poems. After this, there is not much to be gained elsewhere... and so, it may be better to read last rather than first after all.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very nice edition of an old favorite.
This was a reread for me-- and a reacquisition. Somehow, my old copy was lost in one of my many moves. The Varèse edition is well-respected, with reason. I really appreciated the bilingual layout of the book and the slightly larger print. My French wouldn't have been up to reading the nuances in the original, but was good enough to be greatly assisted by the approach. I had the feeling I read the work in both languages.

I wouldn't feel up to reviewing the Rimbaud reading experience. I haven't looked closely at these works in many years. I had expected that as an older woman I would find less in them-- I've always fundamentally thought of them as poems of youth. While I did find *different* things, I was a little surprised how much it was still able to move me.

I'd recommend both the edition and the work.

5-0 out of 5 stars La Voyant
I was given this book by a Morrocan Jew in exchange for a matt-black Zippo lighter whilst I was working in a North London psychiatric hospital as a cook.

The diabolic devotions and insights from a revolutionary modern french poet, social philosopher and prophet. As a whole his words remind me of that saying in the Gospel of Thomas; "I took my stand in the midst of the world, and in flesh I appeared to them. I found them all drunk, and did not find any of them thirsty..." (28) Rimbaud is perceptive, agonizing, tortured, cruel, and poor. In anguish he struggles to understand life; skimming the horizon of a dysfuntional and chaotic world for some sight of salvation, yet it never comes and he cries out with a piercing lament. Idolatry, science, nobility, justice, war, debauchery, crime, punishment, damnation, delerium... Arthur Rimbaud walks a path of rotten corpses with a crown of thorns in search of honor, reason and restitution. He seeks a God only to find in the discovery that he is at once sent back into the dark impenetrable battle of human existence.

This is a poet that sets the heart and soul on fire, he initiates a frantic search for meaning and relevance. Look! he says, see the world untinted, without all the trappings and trimmings, calculate the length and breadth of despair, circumnavigate the emotions and come back to understand yourself and the inevitability of your extinction. Like a present day Francois Villon he is an explorer of visions, the varied manifestations of humanity and society, he has adopted all the tricks of the trade and speaks the 'lingua' of the professional criminal.

In the end Rimbaud the prophet dies like the rest of us, albeit in a syphilitic fever with an amputated right leg... he can walk no more, but he is the one who can knock us off our comfortable seat in civilisation, inspire us to consider the real world and invent our own sustaining myths. Perhaps that lighter would have come in handy... to ignite the remnaining stagnant swamps in my own breast and burn like a comet across a purple blood sky.

5-0 out of 5 stars Rimbaud at his best.
After reading his Illuminations, I decided that I definitely wanted to encounter more of Arthur Rimbaud. I was intrigued by his creative proposition that in order to become engaged with existence the poet must place himself at variance with life. This positioning of the poet in surging counter-subjectivity to life is somewhat Hegelian in that it induces not only a creative synthesis but suffering as its essential Muse. While A Season in Hell is mature Rimbaud toward the end of his life, the Drunken Boat is clearly his finest individual poem. One discovers a symbolic clarity in this single work that summarizes his amazing thirst for life and the human condition in a brief poem of only 25 stanzas. This really is a magnificent work reminiscent of Blake with a style and a passion that transformed his genre and left him immortal. I earnestly invite you to read this telling, visually rich and important work by a major poet of immense talent. It will broaden the palette through which you perceive the brush strokes and colors of your life's impressions.

5-0 out of 5 stars Passionate, Painful, Agonizing and Surreal
What an amazing passionate book of prose and poetry! It's alive with pain, chaos and joy, screaming in anguish in streaming movement that is pouring out of the pages in utter agonizing derision and pain, flowing in surreal release of tension and expression.

The beginning of the book has a short bio and although short and concise, it vaguely talks about how scandalous Rimbaud and his companion Verlaine were in descriptive sexual analogy, refusing to use the word "sexual" and "lover."

Here was a young man who found a gay lover 20 years his senior and traveled in complete uncertainty and insecurity, a "Faustian Man," such as Dean Moriarty in Jack Kerouac's 'On The Road.' Rimbaud was a man who lived in the present moment of risk, spontaneity and the faith to walk in uncertainly and courageously. And this of course brings true living over the comfort zone of existing, which accompanies such an artist with intense pain, guilt, creativity, joy, hurt, anguish and exploding passions. The pages reek with chaotic artistic surrealism.

This man was a rare creator. An outcast of society, a vagabond in decadence and carousing avenging scandal, however a living man of flowing movement, unlike our dead, civilized and rational society. And for this, the man and his poetry snubbed and forgotten, only to be noticed at a later time and recognized for its aesthetic, passionate value. This is typical with almost all true creators of autonomous ability and dangerous living.

From page 23:

"Boredom is no longer my love. Rages, debauchery, madness, - I have known all their soarings and their disasters, - My whole burden is laid down. Let us contemplate undazed the extent of my innocence. I would no longer be capable of begging the solace of a bastinado. I don't fancy myself embarked on a wedding with Jesus Christ as father-in-law. I am not a prisoner of my reason. I said: God, I want freedom in salvation: how am I to seek it? Frivolous tastes have left me. No more need of devotion or of divine love. No more regrets for the age of render hearts. Each of us has his reason, scorn and charity; I reserve my place at the top of that angelic ladder of common sense. As for established happiness, domestic or not . . . no, I cannot. I am too dissipated, too weak. Life flourishing through toil, old platitude! As for me, my life is not heavy enough, it flies and floats far above action, that precious focus of the world. What an old maid I am getting to be, lacking the courage to be in love with death! If only God would grant me celestial, aerial calm, prayer, - like the ancient Saints, - Saints, giants! anchorites, artists such as are not wanted any more! Farce without end? My innocence would make me weep. Life is the farce we all have to lead." ... Read more

12. Collected Poems (Oxford World's Classics)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 344 Pages (2010-01-15)
list price: US$13.95 -- used & new: US$7.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0199538956
Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars
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Rimbaud is the enfant terrible of French literature, the precocious genius whose extraordinary poetry is revolutionary in its visionary, hallucinatory content and its often liberated forms.He wrote all his poems between the ages of about fifteen and twenty-one, after which he turned his back on family, friends, and France to roam the world.In his final years he was a trader in the Horn of Africa.Out of this brief, colorful life and wilderness of sensory poetry, a mythic Rimbaud has been created. One of the greatest French poets of all times, Rimbaud has become an enduring icon of youth, rebellion, and freedom--though behind the myth of the man lies a poetic adventure of high ambition and painful rigor, poignant yet heroic. This bilingual edition provides all of Rimbaud's poems, with the exception of his Latin verses and some small fragments. It also includes some of his prose pieces, chosen because they offer a commentary on his poetic concerns. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

2-0 out of 5 stars Great translation, but the e-book is messed up.
I was thrilled when I found this; I've been wanting a decent kindle edition of Rimbaud's poems for some time. I was so excited I bought it without looking at the preview, which was unfortunate, because something went horrible wrong with the e-book conversion. The book is supposed to be the original French with facing English translations. In the Kindle edition, however, the English and French are randomly mixed up; poems will have a few French stanzas, then a couple English; or, the English translation will abruptly end, with the remainder randomly inserted into the next poem. Extremely frustrating. Please fix this Amazon, or, better yet, create a decent Kindle edition of the Wyatt Mason translations. ... Read more

13. A Study of Theatrical Vision in Arthur Rimbaud's Illuminations (Studies in French Literature)
by Gerald MacKlin
 Hardcover: 269 Pages (1993-11)
list price: US$109.95 -- used & new: US$129.31
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Asin: 0773493492
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This text explores in depth the theatrical dimension of Arthur Rimbaud's imagination. The opening concentrates on the externals of theatre in Rimbaud's work, such as lighting, music and the operatic influence, character presentation and the use of decor. It covers the phenomenon of the "poeme-fete", the whole area of poem and drama, and the poet as observer of his own inner theatre. The final chapter examines the "poem as performance" in the "Illuminations". Features such as surprise elements, beginnings and finales, the use of the conte model and revolutionized punctuation all figure prominently. The conclusion suggest ways in which Rimbaud's "theatralite" can be assimilated to a wider contemporary interest in the interrelatedness of the arts. ... Read more

14. Time of the Assassins a Study of Rimbaud
by Henry Miller
Paperback: 1 Pages (1962-06)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$7.50
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Asin: 0811201155
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars Assasins
I find Rimbaud very interesting, and Miller is one of my favorite writers, but Miller seems to overgush about Rimbaud.Well, nothing is perfect.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Time to read Miller
Henry Miller is one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century -and this amazing biography/review/homage to Rimbaud should be read by anyone who cares about literature and life.

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
This book isn't only for lovers of Rimbaud and/or Henry Miller, it's for anyone that is interested in writing, the life of a writer, and simply wonderful postulations. I read this book about 3 years ago and it still inspires me.

3-0 out of 5 stars A long and expensive blog entry
I bought this book because I'm a Rimbaud fan. Somehow, H. Miller wrote like a blogger would talk in-depth about someone great. That's all. Then I lost the book. I did not even bother to look for it.

I think this book is something you can show-off on your bookshelf but not really enjoy.

5-0 out of 5 stars The best book on Rimbaud in the english language
It's true, Henry Miller was no Rimbaud, but maybe for that very reason he spent much of his life grappling with Rimbaud. This book, written later in Miller's life, has something forced about it, as if Miller realized this was a book he had to write but still didn't feel up to doing Rimbaud justice. Still, at times it reaches a pitch of passionate appreciation that transcends criticism or explanation, and shows that, though he couldn't quite put it in words, Miller's soul felt a deep and abiding debt to the great Rimbaud. Miller was no Rimbaud, but he's as close in spirit and intensity as this nation has produced. ... Read more

15. Illuminations (Picas Series)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 130 Pages (2010-11-01)
list price: US$13.00 -- used & new: US$10.40
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Asin: 1550712764
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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This text is in English and French. This edition of Rimbaud's masterpiece marks the first translation of "Illuminations" that has been praised for its exquisite interpretation, particularly by American translators. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars A revelation
The mark of an extraordinary writer to me has always had something to do with whether the writer's genre was enhanced by the writer. This is a tall order, I know, but the very best writers change the way that their genre is perceived. Rimbaud's prose poems challenged the traditonal style of the Romantics who wrote before him. He brought a sharp, new incandescence, a flaring literary reality, a breakthrough perception to poetry expressed by his point of view. His stirring soul is seared by his epiphanies expressed in simple, clean and gleaming imagery. At times, he reminded me of Blake and Yeats. But his poetry is so original and personal and inventive that the genre metamorphosed by his unique literary perspective. Rimbaud believed that the poet must deliberately become an antagonist and work to place one's sensibilities into constant upheaveal in order to write poetry that is truly revelatory. His life was lived to the hilt as he traveled worldwide with Paul Verlaine and traded adventure incessantly. His destitution, lust for life and piquant sensibilities abound in the light and shadow of his poetry. The genre is indebted to the invention, passion and beauty expressed by this tormented soul who simply couldn't get enough of life.

5-0 out of 5 stars To Find Something New
After reading the poetry of Rimbaud, especially any of the Illuminations, it's hard to forget.If the role of the poet truly is to find something new, then Rimbaud surpasses anyone's imaginations.They are a torment.You can recognize immediately that they are creations of genius, but understanding what they truly are is nearly impossible - and that's what make the Illuminations great.A hundred readings of one of them will still leave you baffled, but will also leave you with the feeling that there is something out there that you don't know, that will explain everything.Rimbaud knows and he is laughing at us.

1-0 out of 5 stars misfires
These metaphysical wet dreams will delight sulky teenagers and juveniles of all ages, but adults will agree with Rimbaud's own judgement: "It's all slop."The Varese translation leaves most of the (rumored) music behind in the original French;what remains is the prose end of the prose-poem equation.I found these pieces supremely boring.Perhaps if I cared about the Rimbaud myth I would read these with different eyes-- but I don't, and therefore what I find is faux passion and histrionic hormones.Add a stilted English to this mixture and the result is malodorous.Not recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Forefather to Modern Poetry and Thought
The works of Rimbaud have become as famous for the character of the writer as for the writings themselves.However, with any work of art, the true test will be the content of the work rather than the person behind the pen.That said, the prose poetry of this child-man artist was an attempt to break away from all types of oppression in all forms (as viewed by Rimbaud):tradition, social expectation, as well as literary convention.First and foremost, Rimbaud was a thinker and then a writer but, unlike many philosophical writers (verses aesthetic writers, i.e.--Proust), he rarely lapses into didacticism.As for the content of his writing, one must consider that Rimbaud prefaced many literary movements, including psychoanalysis in his attempt to let one's "true self" write by "deranging the senses"; his focus on synesthesia predated the Dada movement and allowed him to become a godfather to the Surrealists; his themes of impotence and suffering foreshadowed the existentialists; and his use of multiple narrators foresaw the upcoming modernists in 20th century America.

5-0 out of 5 stars There is a clock which never strikes...
Though her translations are flawed and somewhat dated, Louise Varese still has not been topped as a the bringer-into-English of lil' Arther R.'s thorny prose-poems. Her versions remain closer in spirit to the originalsthan any of the later translations, most of which (if you'll pardon myFrench) suck, from the bland lazy word-for-word of the Penguin Classicsedition, to the innumerable "interpreters" (Paul Schmidt and hisshameless ilk) who make of his poems what they will (sometimes to furtherlengths than JR Ullman did with "The Day On Fire") and then calltheir work "translations." Anyway, if you know Rimbaud I'mprobably preaching to the converted, and if you don't, and don't readFrench, the two New Directions/Varese translations are probably the bestplace to start, along with Pierre Petitfils' user-friendly biography. ... Read more

16. The Drunken Boat & Other Poems from the French of Arthur Rimbaud (French Edition)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 107 Pages (2007-06-30)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$12.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0977252477
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This book includes text in English and French. Known only to literati since its original small press publication in 1975 and two subsequent small press editions, widely published poet Eric Greinke's innovative American versions of Rimbaud's best poems have received critical acclaim as the best translations of Rimbaud to date. Available for the first time as a full-length book, these translations have received high praise from fellow poets-translators such as Robert Bly and Leslie H Whitten. These versions restore the music and imagery of the originals for English-language readers. Greinke was among the first American poets to prioritise poetic elements in translation, breaking tradition with the more literal but less literate 'old school' approach. This book contains 35 of Rimbaud's works accompanied by the original French, including Greinke's hauntingly evocative version of "The Drunken Boat", a poem considered by many to be the single best poem ever written in any language. It includes a twelve page introduction by the poet-translator and an index of first lines. This is a 'must have' for all students and readers of classic poetry. ... Read more

17. Rimbaud: The Double Life of a Rebel
by Edmund White
Hardcover: 256 Pages (2008-11-17)
list price: US$24.00 -- used & new: US$4.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1934633151
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The distinguished biographer, novelist, and memoirist Edmund White brings his literary mastery to a new biography of Arthur Rimbaud.
Poet and prodigy Arthur Rimbaud led a life that was startlingly short, but just as dramatically eventful and accomplished. Even today, over a century after his death in 1891, his visionary poetry has continued to influence everyone from Jim Morrison and Bob Dylan to Patti Smith. His long poem A Season in Hell (1873) and his collection Illuminations (1886) are essential to the modern canon, marked by a hallucinatory and hypnotic style that defined the Symbolist movement in poetry. Having sworn off writing at the age of twenty-one, Rimbaud drifted around the world from scheme to scheme, ultimately dying from an infection contracted while running guns in Africa. He was thirty-seven.

Edmund White writes with a historian's eye for detail, driven by a genuine personal investment in his subject. White delves deep into the young poet's relationships with his family, his teachers, and his notorious affair with the more established poet Paul Verlaine. He follows the often elusive (sometimes blatant) threads of sexual taboo that haunt Rimbaud's poems (in those days, sodomy was a crime) and offers incisive interpretations of the poems, using his own artful translations to bring us closer to the mercurial poet.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

4-0 out of 5 stars Rimbaud, eternally interesting.
I recently read Edmund White's biography of French poet Arthur Rimbaud. I bought the book partly because of its cover : the picture of Rimbaud's portrait done by Henri Fantin-Latour. Over the last decades, I had read a few books on Rimbaud who had such a fascinating life and death (I am French speaking and studied French literature).

Mr White's biography is very pleasant to read. I enjoyed it and it led me to read Rimabaud's Lettres du Harar and another book I have : « Somebody Else », an account of his years in Africa.

I recommand Edmund White's oeuvre without hesitation. Claude Simard

2-0 out of 5 stars Slim and Unimpressing
This slim volume left me completely lost. My basic problem is in deciding who should be its audience.
If you are in love with Rimbaud you should simply stay away from this book. White does not offer anything you have not heard before - major difference from academic biographies is that he seldom indicates his authorities but for some it may be a plus: there are no boring footnotes.
If White is fascinated with Rimbaud he fails to convey this fascination completely. The quality of translations he included is rather doubtful - unless you have a penchant for a vista translations which have little ambition beyond grasping the meaning precisely leaving the form aside (or to be described separately).
If you are in love with White... Well... Hasn't he published a novel recently? Read it instead.
My impressions were eerily similar to those White's Proust left me with - both books could be summed up in the following manner: nothing much happens, nothing much happens, he writes something which when summed up sounds quite trivial, nothing much happens, he dies, some people whose names may ring a bell remember him afterwards, thank you all dear. Plus a bibliography which fails to provide basic data for further research (as if White was painfully aware of the fact that his presentation of the subject matter can hardly make anyone interested in any further research...) in which my favourite part was "most of these books are out of print anyway" - have you ever heard of libraries, honey?
Just one example of originality. White goes on for a while trying to decide the issue of copulation - suggesting that Rimbaud was a top only to conclude some pages further that it is just as possible that they did not practice penetration at all. Charming but if we are talking about Verlaine and Rimbaud it is perfectly clear who was the dominating force when they started writing. What they did in bed is of secondary interest as our data is slim if not outright nonexistent.
If you have never heard of Rimbaud before and your French is not exactly up for the task the only useful part is the end of bibliography when White lists English translation of his poems. If you also fell under the spell of this noisy adolescent from the Ardeness, there are decent biographies of him to be found quite easily. This one comes short both as entertainment and as scholarship so don't bother.

3-0 out of 5 stars More of an overview
This is a well-written, interesting and fun book for anyone who is interested in Rimbaud. However it is more of an overview of his life not an in-depth study like some of the other bios out there. If you have any knowledge of Rimbaud I would suggest going for a different book but for a first timer to Rimbaud it is an excellent introduction.

4-0 out of 5 stars A DIVIDED LIFE
The Starkie and Fowlie biographies were my introduction to Rimbaud's life. As scholastic in tone as those two were, Edmund White seems determined to make the leap to a more conversational, anecdotal overview. Not critical in tone - he lets the work speak for itself - nor overly technical, White's own writing seems at times clumsy and repetitive, rarely hitting the smooth and dazzling pace and associative depth of his subject. The overall effect of this very concise book is one of making the complex comings and goings of Rimbaud more approachable and graspable, less an academic reading experience than an empathetic one: "Pity the wood that finds itself a violin".

What are we to make of such a life? Rather than a "double life", it seems to me Rimbaud deliberately and consciously divided himself from the rest of the world, as well as from the main body of literature. Of course, too often, the rebellious element of artistic movements are simply reactionary: standing against the entrenched as much as for (one of perhaps many) alternatives. Rimbaud's talent transcends simple opposition, but his choices in life clearly took him to a more radical point, one removed from even the need of art.

Still, there lingers a sense of disbelief that any person with such a gift could literally walk away from writing, or that any creative artist could or would set aside the arts for a "regular" life. Personally, I don't find it so hard to accept.The creative life is an often demanding and thankless one. If the artist is an honest critic of his own work, then his own work - no matter how well judged by peers or history - can offer a subjective wealth of disappointment and frustration, regardless of the presence or absence of commercial success. And, often enough, success can simply demand that the artist, now answerable to a market, simply continue to issue redundant, bankrupt artefacts. More so for Rimbaud than virtually any other artist, the second act of his working life seemed capable of breaking the spell of his own writing, demonstrating that the seemingly unknowable aspects of life, those he tried to attain by deranging his senses, could make themselves known in many and terrifying ways, completely free of the artifice of art.

4-0 out of 5 stars The short unhappy life of Arthur Rimbaud
The brevity of White's RIMBAUD: THE DOUBLE LIFE OF A REBEL only increases one's amazement at the bizarreness of the way poet-adventurer-businessman Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) chose to live his life, the hardships he endured, and the magnitude of his accomplishment as a poet (his "mature" work being written between the ages of 17 and 21). White, a scholar of French literature who teaches at Princeton, seems to have a good sense of the best biographical and critical sources available in French and English. His translations of Rimbaud's poems and letters for the most part seem good, though I found myself wondering whether the French word "negre" is best translated with the derogatory term in English as White does in several places. White does a good job of tracing and debunking a couple of the myths that continue to work their way into Rimbaud biographies, such as Enid Starkie's claim that Rimbaud was raped by Prussian soldiers as a teenager and claims by others that Rimbaud participated in slave trading during his time in Africa. The book has a helpful bibliographic essay but, sadly, no index. ... Read more

18. Rimbaud: A Biography
by Graham Robb
Hardcover: 544 Pages (2000-10)
list price: US$35.00 -- used & new: US$28.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0393049558
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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The poet's life was stranger than any fiction: explorer, mercenary, gun runner, and companion to slave traders. Unknown beyond the avant-garde at the time of his death, Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) has been one of the most destructive and liberating influences on twentieth-century culture. During his lifetime he was a bourgeois-baiting visionary, a reinventor of language and perception, a breaker of taboos. The list of his known crimes is longer than the list of his published poems. But his posthumous career is even more astonishing: saint to symbolists and surrealists; poster child for anarchy and drug use; gay pioneer; and a major influence on such artists as Picasso, Bob Dylan, and Jim Morrison. At the age of twenty-one, Rimbaud turned his back on his artistic achievement. For his remaining sixteen years he lived in exile, ending up as a major explorer and arms trader in Abyssinia. The genius of Graham Robb's account is to join the two halves of this life, to show Rimbaud's wild and unsettling poetry as a blueprint for the exotic adventures to come. This is the story of Rimbaud the explorer, in mind and in matter.Amazon.com Review
When he was not yet 17, Arthur Rimbaud (1854-91) electrifiedParis's literary society with the incendiary poems that later made himthe guiding saint of 20th-century rebels, from Pablo Picasso to JimMorrison. "A Season in Hell," "The Drunken Boat," and the prose poemsof Illuminations wereepochal works that changed the nature of an art form--and yet theirauthor abandoned poetry at age 21 and spent the rest of his short lifeas a colonial adventurer in Arabia and Africa. "He was writing in avoid," explains British scholar Graham Robb. "In 1876, most ofRimbaud's admirers either were still in the nursery or had yet to beconceived." Hardly surprising, since the poet was a difficult andfrequently unpleasant person to actually know. The Parisian poets whotook him under their wing soon discovered that Rimbaud was ungrateful,crude, and as scornful of their precious verse as he was of theCatholic Church, bourgeois proprieties, and everything else hisdisapproving mother held dear. Rimbaud's stormy affair with PaulVerlaine estranged the older poet from his wife and, eventually,from most of his artistic friends as well. In Robb's depiction, thepoet possessed from his earliest youth a restless, searching intellectthat permitted no compromise with convention nor tenderness forothers' weaknesses. The author doesn't soften Rimbaud's "savagecynicism" or gloss over his frequently obnoxious behavior, yet Robbarouses our admiration for "one of the great Romantic imaginations,festering in damp, provincial rooms like an intelligent disease." LikeRobb's excellent biographies of Hugo and Balzac, this sharp, subtle,unsentimental portrait is both erudite and beautifullywritten. --Wendy Smith ... Read more

Customer Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars Real Deal
I read this book once in the college & is just addictive to read. Robb make a post-edition of what Enid Starkie made before.Pros:Include more accurate biographical research. Cons: Enid Starkie in his life meet Isabelle & the mom of the little Arthur. I recommend you this book before you buy the Enid edition. Why? Well, this are 2 different people making the best they could to you. Also recommend the Graham Robb ; Paris.

4-0 out of 5 stars Rimbaud by Robb
A very fine literary biography.A deep penetration into a mind in disarray. If anyone can make sense of Rimbaud's poetry, it is Robb.Robb makes numerous projections about what exactly the subject was thinking at various points in the narration, but they are logical and even if not precisely the truth, it would not matter, as they tie the story together very nicely.

I would recommend this book to anybody interested in the bizarre.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
I've never been into Rimbaud's poetry, but a friend suggested I read his biography by Graham Robb. I thought it was a wonderful book. I could barely put it down. Rimbaud's life was fascinating. From his life with Verlaine to his travels to Java and other intriguing places, Robb's book covers it all.

I highly recommend this book.

2-0 out of 5 stars Undisciplined and patronizing
I found this book impossible to read.
I had hoped to find a substantive biographical narrative.
Instead I found an undisciplined, distracted and patronizing melange.
There are two problems here.
First, the author constantly changes voices. One voice is the biographical narrative. The second is gratuitous English 101 literary criticism. The third voice is even more intrusive, a psychological analysis that is apparently based on the author's politics, prejudices and enthusiasms.
The second problem is this.
When assuming the latter two voices, in particular, the text is shaded when not overwhelmed by the author's perceptions and opinions.
As a result this is neither biography nor history.
It's a personal assessment, a critique and a memoir.
I'm still looking for a good bio of Rimbaud.
Anybody know of one?

5-0 out of 5 stars nasty and bourgeois genius.
Rimbaud: A Biography
Graham Robb'sRimbaud biography. Fantastic read, not enough about the poetry, perhaps, but sufficient about the life in Africa to demolish the myth of Rimbaud as anti-establishment.
Amazing how thoroughly nasty and bourgeois AR was.He stayed in Africa because he was trying to save up for a good wife. He said if he returned poor he would only get a widow. He hoped to get a college girl if he returned rich enough. While in Africa he was beaten almost to death after cutting an infibulated girl with a knife and seriously wounding her. He was not killed because Muslims dont kill madmen.
He trafficked in guns and traveled with slave caravans. He is recorded as attempting to buy two boy slaves.
The most astounding thing about AR is his, and his families, treatment of his older brother. Alfred "married a pregnant pauper" and for this terrible crime against bourgeois values he was cut off from the family as if he didnt exist.Alfred became a bus driver, had three children, but Arthur determined he would get none of his money, and the family never contacted him.

That said, I would definitely read the poems, or watch Terence Stamp or DiCaprio in the movies ... Read more

19. Rimbaud: Complete Works, Selected Letters
by Jean Nicholas Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 370 Pages (1967-10-15)
list price: US$17.00 -- used & new: US$6.39
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0226719731
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Wallace Fowlie's prose translations accompany the original French texts in this, the first complete bilingual edition of Rimbaud's work in prose and poetry.

"This handsome edition, which makes France's most remarkable poet readily available in the U.S., may well be a literary landmark comparable to Baudelaire's introduction of Edgar Allan Poe in France a century earlier."—Anna Balakian, New York Times Book Review
... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good read for Rimbaud fans
I was assigned this book in a Freshman Lit class and what do ya know I really like Rimbaud.

1-0 out of 5 stars English translation, too literal, too boring...
From a person who absolutely does not understand French language, like myself, this book is a 'pain-in-the-behind' to read!

First of all, it seems like Fowlie translated 'too literally' from Rimbaud's original French text (I can sense that by noticing some words that are same both in French and English on the same line). This in turn makes the English translation to sound too 'flat' and 'unimaginative' (and 'difficult'). Most of the poems, I have to read several times to understand what Rimbaud (or should I say Fowlie) is trying to say. Worse, in some cases, I have to go to a bookstore and read other editions done by more imaginative translators to fully understand what Rimbaud's poetry is about. Now that's sad...

If you know French, this book may be good for you since you can ONLY read French text, but if you don't know jack about French, DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK! YOU WILL BE BORED TO DEATH! Read the ones translated by more creative authors. Rimbaud's work deserves better treatment than this! I will sell this book at an used bookstore and buy Paul Schmidt's version!

5-0 out of 5 stars useful if you know french
This is very complete, but the english translations are pretty bad, useful if you are reading in french and forget some of the words.If you are going to read Rimbaud in english, get the Louise Varese (new directions) editions instead.

5-0 out of 5 stars A true genius
For all who love Rimbaud's work this is the book for them. The included letters give the reader a glimpse into the boy genius that was Rimbaud. He certainly was a difficult person but there is no denying his brilliance as a poet.

5-0 out of 5 stars Yes, but...
I ... found Fowlie's over-literal translations ugly and lame.But I think this may be deliberate.The unbeautifulness of the translations forces you back to the exquisite French original.It's a joy to have these poems as Rimbaud wrote them, and a bilingual edition is a must for the non-French-reader.If you want a beautiful English translation, I recommend reading Paul Schmidt's in conjunction with this one. ... Read more

20. Poésies Complètes (French Edition)
by Arthur Rimbaud
Paperback: 60 Pages (2010-04-02)
list price: US$6.40 -- used & new: US$6.39
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1153818183
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