01 Colette Peignot, 1903 – 1938

Book of collected writings called Laure, written by Georges Bataille’s once paramour Colette Peignot. For a time they lived together. She got tuberculosis, died in his house at 35.

Had, it is said, by that time destroyed much of anything else she may have wrote, though some of it had gotten published under so it is said various pseudonyms – including Laure.

Kathy Acker is said to have colluded with history of Colette’s life in her book My Mother Demonology.

Talk is she was abused as a kid by a Priest. That she had suffered through multiple deaths of close relatives who all died in WW1.

And somehow that all made her fierce, a radical, by din & skin of her aggressive sexuality.

Her writing was (and still is) sometimes considered shocking though not yet at Kathy Ackers brutal extensiveness. Hers too appears filled with strains of astonishing beauty & resilience.

Kathy Acker is said to have colluded with the history of Colette’s life, in Kathy’s mum book My Mother Demonology  Girls and their mums.

Laure, hits home for me. About living thru lonely discovery of beauty and its multiplying veils of innocence and contempt, wayward gears of imaginations blunders into hell, while lost in a kind of suffocation — no permission no admission, in regards to a seemingly tethered yet groping lonely wretched cage of reality, and the strident humm of near tyrannically religious mum —

Directly after hearing of of another poets passing (John Ashbery who’d I’d met at a National Book Awards ceremony) my fire stairs landing was visited by a bird with a blue head and a purple neck who paced back and forth, back and forth dot dot dot.

I have a thing for birds and pacing. Unsettled parts of nature’s will-o-wisp engage thoughtfully in age-old conspiracies looking for lists.

So far the results have been — pretty insufferable, word for word, not very good. Though, the meaning easily gets across.

And then — then a cloud darkened the room. And thought paraded thru — for pay back, for a give – to tryhand at a new translation of some chapters of Peignot’s work. (Laure has been translated once that I know of in the 80s.

So far the results have been — pretty insufferable, word for word, not very good. Though, the meaning easily gets across.

So I read Brachet’s French etymology twice, and Camus’ Le Mythe de Sysyphe alongside wonderful translation from French by Justin O’Brien (1955) three times. Checking every word for word. To get better feel for how translators do it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top