A collection from one of the great figures in modern French poetry.This selection is from L’Espace du Dedans, which collected eight books of prose poems, sketches and free verse. Brilliantly translated by Richard Ellmann, Michaux asks readers to join him in a fantastic world of the imagination. It is a world where wry humor plays against horror––where Chaplin meets Kafka––a world of pure and rare invention.
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Henri Michaux (1899–1984), born in Belgium, studied mysticism as a young man and traveled throughout South America and Asia before settling in Paris. He wrote more than twenty volumes of poetry and prose and showed paintings he created under the influence of mescaline. In 1965 he was awarded the French National Prize for Letters but refused the award, saying that it threatened his independence.
Richard Ellmann was Goldsmiths’ Professor at Oxford University and Woodruff Professor at Emory University. He achieved world fame for his biography of Joyce and wrote many scholarly and critical works, including two on Yeats.
“Michaux excels in making us feel... the strangeness of natural things and the naturalness of strange things.”
- André Gide
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