Saturday, July 01, 2006

Surrealist poetry

"The embrace of poetry like that of the flesh
As long as it lasts
Shuts out any glimpse of the misery of the world"


From Andre Breton 'On the road to San Romano'. I managed to find a book of Surrealist love poems in a secondhand bookstore yesterday. I find surreal poetry to be the most exciting and if I am true to myself it is the style that I prefer to write. This is quite a wonderful book. The surrealists 'exploited' the abstract nature of their poems to write about erotic subjects, it is true the poems are quite powerful. This is the stereotype of all poets that they write about sex. I must admit it I don't completely agree but it does make me smile and that quote about the embrace of poetry is wonderful. In another part of the same poem he sames to be describing what poetry is, and he does a marvellous job:

"The eye of the kite
The dew on the horsetail
The memory of a bottle frosted over on a silver tray
And the road of the mental adventure
That climbs abruptly
One stop and bushes cover it instantly"

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yeah surrealism was very important here in France at the beginning of the 20th century. As for me I do not appreciate it that much - there were many contradictions in surrealism, and what is more André Breton was a very intolerant man! He is often blamed for this. A man left the surrealism and expressed how disgusted he was by them all ( and I like this man very much ): Antonin Artaud. I can give you the text if you can read French...

Igneos said...

I don't really know french well enough to read it I am afraid. A lot of people say that because so-an-so was a horrible person you shouldn't read his stuff. I'm inclined to doubt this, I know for myself some people find me difficult and when I write I find it easier to express myself. Salvador Dali was also well known for being quite a nesty character and yet lots of people love his art. I like surrealism because I don't think that life makes sense and people who think life is very straightforward and simple are probably cheating themselves.

Rod