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Rimbaud, Arthur - All I remember now are her white lace panties



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Arthur Rimbaud – from Rimbaud Complete [translated by Wyatt Mason]

This is certainly the same countryside.  The same rustic house that belonged to my parents; the very room where above the doors reside reddening pastoral scenes, coats of arms, lions.

One dines in a hall filled with candles and wines and rustic wainscoting.  The table is very large.  And the servants!  There were many, as many as I had recalled. – And there was even one of my old friends who’d stopped by, a priest, and dressed like one; it allowed him greater freedom.  I remember his crimson room, with yellow paper windowpane; and his books, all hidden away, that had been soaked by the sea.

I was abandoned, in this endless country house; I read in the kitchen, drying my muddy clothes in front of my hosts’ parlour conversations; moved to death by morning’s murmuring milk and the late century’s night.

I was in a very dark room; what was I doing?  A servant drew close; I can tell you she was a little dog, however pretty, and it seemed to me, possessing an inexpressible maternal nobility; pure, familiar, utterly charming! She pinched my arm.

I don’t even remember her face very well anymore; this isn’t so that I might manage to remember her arm, whose skin I rolled between my fingers; nor her mouth, which my own seized upon like a desperate little wave, endlessly digging something within.  I backed her into a basket filled with cushions and boat canvas in a dark corner.  All I remember now are her white lace panties.

Then, such despair!  The barrier shifted, somehow became the shadows of trees and I sank beneath the amorous sadness of night.

The source of the experience

Rimbaud, Arthur

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