Parijs - 19e eeuw Maurice Rollinat Oscar Wilde





Wilde met some of the French decadent writers. One was Rollinat. Wilde noted at 3 o’ clock in the morning that he had just reread Rollinat’s poem describing 2 young country people, a boy and a girl, who watch the mating of a cow and bull and silently recognize that that night they will be repeating the same process. Rollinat’s subjects included suicide, disease, live burial, specters, madness, diabolism. Sherard thought that Rollinat needed help, asking Wilde If you see a man throw himself into the river, wouldn’t you go after him? Wilde replied: I should consider it an act of gross indecency to do so.

Oscar Wilde door Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

Martin Birnbaum: Oscar Wilde, Fragments & Memories (1914)

Then follows what is apparently the tabletalk of the poet Maurice Rollinat, who tried to rival Baudelaire on his own ground, and was going to pieces mentally and physically when Wilde and Sherard knew him. 

"It was drugs," writes Sherard " drugs with him morning and night, drugs for food and drugs for sleep; cerebral excitement all the time. The result as we saw it was a terrible one, and we could fancy the nerve-wreck of Charles Baudekire, before the bow snapped, from the ravaged picture before us."

Rollinat checked himself in time, however, and wrote some interesting decadent poetry, notably " Les Névroses."

Wilde invited him to a good dinner at the Voltaire, and our quotation may be Wilde's transcription of the French poet's own words, or ideas suggested to Wilde by what Rollinat said, or by the verses which he recited on that occasion. The page in Wilde's note-book is headed Rollinat."

II n'y-a q'une forme pour le beau mais pour chaque chose chaque individu a un formule: ainsi on ne comprend pas les poets: Je ne crois pas au progrès: mais je crois au stagnation de la perversité humaine. II me faut les rêves, le fantastique; j 'admire les chaises Japonais parce-que ils n'ont pas été faits pour s'asseoir.

His idea of music continuing the beauty of the poetry without its idea.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec: Oscar Wilde op de rug gezien (met hoge hoed) bij een voorstelling van La Goulue