Two editions of Fleurs du mal were published in Baudelaire's lifetime — one in 1857 and an expanded edition in 1861. "Scraps" and censored poems were collected in Les Épaves in 1866. After Baudelaire died the following year, a "definitive" edition appeared in 1868.

Supervert - Necrophilia VariationsFleursdumal.org is a labor of love produced and maintained by Supervert.

External Links

Hymne

À la très chère, à la très belle
Qui remplit mon coeur de clarté,
À l'ange, À l'idole immortelle,
Salut en l'immortalité!

Elle se répand dans ma vie
Comme un air imprégné de sel,
Et dans mon âme inassouvie
Verse le goût de l'éternel.

Sachet toujours frais qui parfume
L'atmosphère d'un cher réduit,
Encensoir oublié qui fume
En secret à travers la nuit,

Comment, amour incorruptible,
T'exprimer avec vérité?
Grain de musc qui gis, invisible,
Au fond de mon éternité!

À la très bonne, à la très belle
Qui fait ma joie et ma santé,
À l'ange, à l'idole immortelle,
Salut en l'immortalité!

Charles Baudelaire


Hymn

To the dearest, fairest woman
Who sets my heart ablaze with light,
To the angel, the immortal idol,
Greetings in immortality!

She permeates my life
Like air impregnated with salt
And into my unsated soul
Pours the taste for the eternal.

Sachet, ever fresh, that perfumes
The atmosphere of a dear nook,
Forgotten censer smoldering
Secretly through the night,

Everlasting love, how can I
Describe you truthfully?
Grain of musk that lies unseen
In the depths of my eternity!

To the dearest, fairest woman
Who is my health and my delight
To the angel, the immortal idol,
Greetings in immortality!

— William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)


Hymn

To the most lovely, the most dear,
The Angel, and the deathless grail
Who fill my heart with radiance clear —
In immortality all hail!

Into my life she flows translated
As saline breezes fill the sky,
And pours into my soul unsated
The taste of what can never die.

Sachet, forever fresh, perfuming
Some quiet nook of hid delight;
A lone forgotten censer fuming
In secrecy across the night.

How, flawless love, with truth impart
Your purity and keep it whole,
O unseen grain of musk who art
The core of my eternal soul?

To the most lovely, the most dear,
The angel, and the deathless grail,
Who fill my life with radiance clear —
In immortality all hail!

— Roy Campbell, Poems of Baudelaire (New York: Pantheon Books, 1952)


Hymn

To the all-fair, to the all-dear
Who steeps my heart in splendency
(Angel, immortal idol, hear!)
All hail in immortality!

She strews her savor through my days,
Pungent as brine on salt, tart air,
She fills my restive soul and lays
Eternity's suave flavors there.

Ever-fresh sachet, redolent
In every coign of a loved room,
Forgotten censer, diffluent
In secret smoke across the gloom,

Love, incorruptible, how can
I celebrate thee truthfully?
O grain of musk, unseen of man,
Couched deep in my eternity!

To the all-fair, to the all-dear,
My joy, my health, my sanity.
(Angel, immortal idol, hear!)
All hail in immortality!

— Jacques LeClercq, Flowers of Evil (Mt Vernon, NY: Peter Pauper Press, 1958)


Hymn

To the very dear, to the beautiful one
Who fills my heart with clearness,
To the angel, to the immortal idol,
Hail in immortality!

She is where my life is
Like air tinged with salt,
And in my still desiring soul
Pours the taste of eternity.

Richness always fresh that perfumes
The atmosphere with a dear something,
Forgotten censer which is misty
In secret through the night,

How, love incorruptible,
Tell of you with truth?
Musk grain, that lies, unseen,
At the beginning of my everlastingness!

To the very good, to the very beautiful one
Who is my joy and my health,
To the angel, to the immortal idol,
Hail in immortality!

— Eli Siegel, Hail, American Development (New York: Definition Press, 1968)


Hymne

to her, my love and my delight,
my full heart's fiery ecstasy,
immortal goddess, heavenly sprite,
my pledge in immortality!

like briny air from ocean shores
through all my hours she drifts and clings,
and in my thirsty spirit pours
her love for everlasting things.

unchanging phial of perfume rare
drowning a shrine of love's delight,
forgotten censer smoking there
in secret through the shadowy night,

o love that shall defy decay,
how shall I truly utter thee?
o grain of musk hid far away
deep in my soul's eternity!

to her, my love and my delight,
my full heart's fiery ecstasy,
immortal goddess, heavenly sprite,
my pledge in immortality!

— Lewis Piaget Shanks, Flowers of Evil (New York: Ives Washburn, 1931)


Hymn

To the most dear, to the most beautiful
Who fills my heart with brightness,
To the angel, to the immortal idol
Salute to immortality!

She diffuses through my life
Like air alive with brine,
And in my insatiated soul
Pours the flavor of eternity.

Sachet ever fresh that perfumes
The atmosphere of a dear room
Forgotten censer smoking
Secretly across the night,

How, O imperishable love,
Can I express you truly?
Grain of musk lying invisibly
In the depths of my eternity!

To the most good, to the most beautiful
Who is my joy and welfare,
To the angel, to the immortal idol
Salute to immortality!

— Geoffrey Wagner, Selected Poems of Charles Baudelaire (NY: Grove Press, 1974)