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House of Arthur Rimbaud

We know a lot about the sex life of poet maudit Arthur Rimbaud, because of his explicit poems (one for all, le sonnet du trou du cul, an ode to the asshole he co-wrote with his violent lover Paul Verlaine), but we know less about the many places he called home during his brief life. Since he was 16, Rimbaud tried to escape from his hometown, even reaching Bruxelles by foot (144km more or less). He spent the first part of his life being an enchanted poet and a furious wanderer. But there’s a special place he called home. A place where he wrote his most famous piece, Une Saison à L’Enfer: his family country house in Roche.

The house was abandoned, destroyed, then rebuilt, then everyone thought it would’ve been destroyed again, until… A sorceress, a self-proclaimed “girlfriend” of the late Rimbaud, and one of the most interesting poets of our time, decided to buy the house and save it from oblivion. Our hero is called Patti Smith. She once stated “I devoted so much of my girlish daydreams to Rimbaud. Rimbaud was like my boyfriend.” The fascination she felt for Rimbaud derived much from the poet’s mystical and indecipherable language, a sort of initiatory formula. Rimbaud’s eternal escape from Charleville is in a way reminiscent of the youth wanderings of the priestess of rock, and now, together, they can come home.