Comte de Lautreamont Quotes (displaying: 1 - 27 of 27 quotes)
I sought a soul that might resemble mine, and I could not find it. I scanned all the crannies of the earth: my perseverance was useless. Yet I could not remain alone. There had to be someone who would approve of my character; there had to be someone with the same ideas as myself. It was morning. The sun in all his magnificence rose on the horizon, and behold, there also appeared before my eyes a young man whose presence made flowers grow as he passed. He approached me and held out his hand:?I have come to you, you who seek me. Let us give thanks for this happy day? But I replied:?Go! I did not summon you. I do not need your friendshi? ? It was evening. Night was beginning to spread the blackness of her veil over nature. A beautiful woman whom I could scarcely discern also exerted her bewitching sway upon me and looked at me with compassion. She did not, however, dare speak to me. I said:?Come closer that I may discern your features clearly, for at this distance the starlight is not strong enough to illumine them? Then, with modest demeanour, eyes lowered, she crossed the greensward and reached my side. I said as soon as I saw her:?I perceive that goodness and justice have dwelt in your heart: we could not live together. Now you are admiring my good looks which have bowled over more than one woman. But sooner or later you would regret having consecrated your love to me, for you do not know my soul. Not that I shall be unfaithful to you: she who devotes herself to me with so much abandon and trust? with the same trust and abandon do I devote myself to her. But get this into your head and never forget it: wolves and lambs look not on one another with gentle eyes? What then did I need, I who rejected with disgust what was most beautiful in humanity!
One should let one’s fingernails grow for a fortnight. Oh! how sweet to snatch brutally from his bed a boy who has as yet nothing upon his upper lip, and, with eyes open wide, to feign to stroke his forehead softly, brushing back his beautiful locks! And all of a sudden, just when he least expects it, to sink your long nails into his tender breast, but not so that he dies, for if he died you would miss the sight of his subsequent sufferings. Then you drink his blood, sucking the wounds, and during this time, which should last an eternity, the child weeps.
I am filthy. I am riddled with lice. Hogs, when they look at me, vomit. My skin is encrusted with the scabs and scales of leprosy, and covered with yellow pus.[...] A family of toads has taken up residence in my left armpit and, when one of them moves, it tickles. Mind one of them does not escape and come and scratch the inside of your ear with its mouth; for it would then be able to enter your brain. In my right armpit there is a chameleon which is perpetually chasing them, to avoid starving to death: everyone must live.[...] My anus has been penetrated by a crab; encouraged by my sluggishness, he guards the entrance with his pincers, and causes me a lot of pain.
He dreams he is happy; that his corporeal nature has changed; or at least that he has flown off upon a purple cloud of another sphere peopled by beings of the same kind as himself. Alas! May his illusion last till dawn’s awakening! He dreams the flowers dance round him in a ring like immense demented garlands, and impregnate him with their balmy perfumes while he sings a hymn of love, locked in the arms of a magically beautiful human being. But it is merely twilight mist he embraces, and when he wakes their arms will no longer be entwined. Awaken not, hermaphrodite. Do not wake yet, I beg you. Why will you not believe me? Sleep … sleep forever. May your breast heave while pursuing the chimerical hope of happiness — that I allow you; but do not open your eyes. Ah! do not open your eyes.
— What were you thinking about, child? — I was thinking of heaven. — It’s unnecessary for you to think of heaven: there’s already enough to consider about earth. Are you tired of living, you who have barely been born? — No, but everyone prefers heaven to earth. — Well, not I. For since heaven, as well as earth, has been made by God, you may count on encountering up there the very same evils as here below. After your death, you will not be rewarded according to your deserts, for if injustices are done you on this earth (as you will find out later by experience) there is no reason why, in the next life, you will not be further wronged. The best thing for you to do is not think of God, and since it is refused you, to make your own justice.
It is not right that everyone should read the pages which follow; only a few will be able to savour this bitter fruit with impunity. Consequently, shrinking soul, turn on your heels and go back before penetrating further into such uncharted, perilous wastelands. Listen well to what I say: turn on your heels and go back, not forward,[...]
I shall set down in a few lines how uptight Maldoror was during his early years, when he lived happy. There: done. He later perceived he was born wicked: strange mischance! For a great many years he concealed his character as best he could; but in the end, because this effort was not natural to him, each day the blood would rush to his head until, unable any longer to bear such a life, he hurled himself resolutely into a career of evil? sweet atmosphere! Who could guess whenever he hugged a rosycheeked young child, that he was longing to hack off those cheeks with a razor and would have done so often had not the idea of Justice and her long cortge of punishments restrained him on every occasion.
After some hours, the dogs, exhausted by running round, almost dead, their tongues hanging out, set upon one another and, not knowing what they are doing, tear one another into thousands of pieces with incredible rapidity. Yet they do not do this out of cruelty. One day, a glazed look in her eyes, my mother said to me: ‘When you are in bed and you hear the barking of the dogs in the countryside, hide beneath your blanket, but do not deride what they do: they have an insatiable thirst for the infinite, as you, and I, and all other pale, long-faced human beings do.’ Since that time, I have respected the dead woman’s wish. Like those dogs I feel the need for the infinite. I cannot, cannot satisfy this need. I am the son of a man and a woman, from what I have been told. This astonishes me…I believed I was something more.
Throughout my life I have seen, without one exception, narrow-shouldered men performing innumerable idiotic acts, brustalising their fellows, and corrupted souls by every means. They call the motive for their actions: fame. Seeing these exhibitions I’ve longed to laugh, with the rest, but that strange imitation was impossible. Taking a penknife with a sharp-edged blade, I slit the flesh at the points joining the lips. For an instant I believed my aim was achieved. I saw in a mirror the mouth ruined at my own will! An error! Besides, the blood gushing freely from the two wounds prevented my distinguishing whether this really was the grin of others. But after some moments of comparison I saw quite clearly that my smile did not resemble that of humans: the fact is, I was not laughing.
One should let one's nails grow for a fortnight. O, how sweet it is to drag brutally from his bed a child with no hair on his upper lip and with wide open eyes, make as if to touch his forehead gently with one's hand and run one's fingers through his beautiful hair. Then suddenly, when he is least expecting it, to dig one's long nails into his soft breast, making sure, though, that one does not kill him; for if he died, one would not later be able to contemplate his agonies. Then one drinks his blood as one licks his wounds; and during this time, which ought to last for eternity, the child weeps.
Before being taken to the Morgue, the body is left for a while on the embankment so they can try reviving it. A massive crowd gathers round the body. Those unable to see because they are at the back jostle those in front as best they can. Each thinks: “I wouldn’t be drowning myself, not I.” They pity the young suicide, admire him, but do not imitate him. He, however, found it quite natural to give himself death, deeming nothing on earth able to content him, and aspiring higher.