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Gérard de Nerval
French poet
(1808-55)



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Je suis le ténébreux, -- le veuf, -- l'inconsolé,
Le prince d'Aquitaine à la tour abolie;
Ma seule étoile est morte, et mon luth constellé
Porte le soleil noir de la
mélancholie.
I am the darkly shaded, the bereaved, the inconsolate,
the prince of Aquitaine, with the blasted tower.
My only star is dead, and my star-strewn lute
Carries on it the black mark of melancholy.
-- Les Chimères (1854), "El Desdichado"

Why should a lobster be any more ridiculous than a dog ... or any other animal that one chooses to take for a walk? I have a liking for lobsters. They are peaceful, serious creatures. They know the secrets of the sea, they don't bark, and they don't gnaw upon one's monadic privacy like dogs do. And Goethe had an aversion to dogs, and he wasn't mad.
-- Explaining why he had been walking a lobster on a lead in the Palais Royal gardens. In: T. Gautier, Portraits et Souvénirs Littéraires (1875). Richard Holmes, tr.


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The selection of the above quotes and the writing of the accompanying notes was performed by the author David Paul Wagner.

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