I say you have to be a visionary, make yourself a visionary

Mercer Street (The Problem Is To Make The Soul Into A Monster) ©MAIERMOUL
Mercer Street (The Problem Is To Make The Soul Into A Monster) ©MAIERMOUL

The first task of the man who wants to be a poet is to study his own awareness of himself, in its entirety; he seeks out his soul, he inspects it, he tests it, he learns it. As soon as he knows it, he must cultivate it!

But the problem is to make the soul into a monster– I say you have to be a visionary, make yourself a visionary. A Poet makes himself a visionary through a long, boundless, and systematized disorganization of all the senses.

When the eternal slavery of Women is destroyed, when she lives for herself and through herself … she will be a poet as well! Woman will discover the unknown! Will her world of ideas differ from ours? She will discover strange things, unfathomable, repulsive, delightful–

– Arthur Rimbaud, letter to Paul Demeny