All Excerpts

  • From Book 3: Portrait of Antonin Artaud

    November 27, 2019 by

    This is based on research of course, but it’s eerie how much I guessed before it was confirmed by research.             He was not what I expected, even after all these years. I discovered there was always more to learn about Antonin Artaud. Like me he experienced sudden vertigo, especially at high places but also… Read more

  • From Book 2: The Sex Discussions, Part Two

    February 19, 2021 by

               This section is presented in its entirety. “I don’t know where my story begins,” I said. “And I wonder if that’s not a lie too, that any story has a beginning. Life just happens and we pick a point and say, ‘It started here,’ when it didn’t really start there, even with one’s birth.”            … Read more

  • From Book 2: The Sex Discussions, Part One

    January 13, 2021 by

    Desnos never locked his door and now this worried me. When I stepped inside I saw a lit candle in a far corner. Artaud lay there on a mattress, and someone lay next to him. Desnos was asleep on his sofa and Roger and Justine lay tangled on his regular mattress, but everyone else had… Read more

  • Stephen Barber’s Newest Work

    January 8, 2021 by

    How much do we love Stephen Barber’s works on Antonin Artaud? My God. He’s right up there with Mary Ann Caws, Martin Esslin and Florence de Mèredieu in my gratitude for his and their research and translations of Artaud, Breton, and Desnos. My next purchase: A Sinister Assassin: Antonin Artaud’s Last Writings, September 1947-March 1948!

  • From Book 2: In Total Darkness

    January 8, 2021 by

                February days turned grey with rain. Trapped inside, I fled the café scene for Louis’s small apartment. We spent a great deal of time together, for the two of us were seeing very little of our other friends lately. “We’re the only people who aren’t successful,” Louis joked, “or failing successfully.”             Justine modeled… Read more

  • From Book One: Fernand

    December 19, 2020 by

                Outside the train station Marseilles greeted me with her heat and her noise and her dirt, so frightening to me as a child. Now I welcomed the jostling crowd, the colorful frocks, the flash of bright eyes and teeth, the smell of sweat and of perfume, the many swaggering languages. Palm trees and moldering… Read more

  • From Book 3: This Ragamuffin

    December 17, 2020 by

                “And could that be why,” Barrault interrupted, “Artaud is angry with me?”             He sounded stricken. I turned to him again and saw the pain in his eyes. He was, after all, just a kid. “Barrault, what has happened?”             Barrault sighed. “We’ve spent so much time together and shared so many ideas that… Read more

  • From Book 2: Foujita and Youki

    December 12, 2020 by

    “Come on, Geoff,” Youki urged, tugging at my arm. I allowed her to lead me to the car. “Come see the studio.”             I climbed in the back seat of her yellow Ballot with Foujita and Bernice, and the chauffeur nodded to Youki while she sat in the front passenger seat arranging her hair. “Home,… Read more

  • From Book 2: Napoléon

    August 6, 2020 by

                The role of Roderick Usher went to another actor, but Jean-Paul Marat in Gance’s film Napoléon belonged to Antonin Artaud. We attended the premier held at the Paris Opera. Napoléon Vu par Abel Gance, originally intended as a six-film series, was now a four-hour epic film promised to be on par with D.W. Griffith’s… Read more

  • From Book 3: Mexico and Trotsky

    August 4, 2020 by

    Days later, when I again visited the studio, Artaud had the gall to tease Sonia and me in front of Anita about knowing how to show an attractive young lady a good time on her first visit to Paris. When Anita in her effervescent voice demanded the details, Sonia threw a bottle of ink at… Read more

  • From Book 2: Escaping the Police

    July 31, 2020 by

                Hands tore at me and I threw my fists out blindly, making contact with eyes and cheeks. The air cleared and I crawled onstage. Now Breton was nowhere to be seen. I hauled Desnos up by the arm. Holding his handkerchief against the flow of blood, Desnos stumbled in the direction I shoved him… Read more

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