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Alcoholes

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  5,592 ratings  ·  117 reviews
Alcools, first published in 1913 and one of the few indispensable books of twentieth- century poetry, provides a key to the century's history and consciousness. Champion of "cubism," Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918) fashions in verse the sonic equivalent of what Picasso accomplishes in his cubist works: simultaneity. Apollinaire has been so influential that without him th ...more
Paperback, Clásicos para hoy, 135 pages
Published September 1st 2014 by Conaculta (first published 1913)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  5,592 ratings  ·  117 reviews


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Steven Godin
Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: france, poetry
I'd say this is the best book of French poetry I've read since Paul Éluard's 'Capitale de la douleur'.
It's very much a collection that should be seen as a landmark in the history of not just French poetry but 20th century poetry in general.

The book features many sublime longer poems like 'Song of the Poorly Loved', The House of the Dead', 'The Betrothal', and 'Vendemiaire', but to keep things brief, I picked three of my favourite shorter poems below.

CLOTILDE

Anemone and columbine
Have sprung up i
...more
Mariel
Feb 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: one night it was the sea
Recommended to Mariel by: painted bird falling
I've lived like a fool and I've wasted my time
You dare not look at your hands I want to weep all the time
Zone

Everyone is old but you. They were here first and are still here in their stale after life. But here on this new street they are young and you are their young. Their bed time piety, your staying up late to old, Jesus is the walking away beauty of parents pedestal. He's the cool older girl with the who you want to be. Pray into everybody's age. Out of their mouths the breath to ascend. Me
...more
Eadweard
If she ever returns to me
I'll say to her I'll say I'm happy
I void my heart and head
Into barrels of Hades
I shit the entire sky
I'd rather be happy
I'd rather be a child
I wish never to forget her
----


O my love your florentine copulations
Left a bitter taste
Repulsive to fate
The movement of her eyes
Drew stars across the evening sky
In her look swam sirens
We fucked until we bled
----




You laugh at yourself and the laughter crackles like hellfire
The sparks gild the ground and background of your life Your lif
...more
Jenna
If you were never quite sure what the word "lyricism" meant, read this book. Apollinaire pays his due to formal constraints such as meter and rhyme, yet never gets bogged down by them. Like wily Hermes with his winged sandals, Apollinaire leaps athletically from image to image as though following the directives of some wild angelic muse, rather than obeying the dictates of ordinary terrestrial logic. The result is an exciting, spontaneous, unpredictable poetry whose substance it would be impossi ...more
Lee Foust
Jan 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great collection, translations seems legit (my French is rather rudimentary so I'm not the best judge), and the notes were fair and balanced. Apollinaire's imagery is always competent, often startling and very clever. I loved the blending of modern/ism with mythology and even Christianity (although my relationship with the religion itself is complex and dysfunctional). At least here in the verse the mix of symbolism, mythologies (classical, Christian, and personal), with wool-gathering and a sur ...more
Elora
Apr 21, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
On a positive note: there were some nice metaphors I guess, but that doesn’t make up for the time I wasted in analyzing that ENTIRE thing.

God I hate French sometimes.
Jlawrence
Jan 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Apollinaire is a fascinating poet because he synthesized or presaged several early 20th-century movements (cubism, futurism, surrealism, modernism) with his own unique vision. A few of these poems are like knotty puzzles that can only be decoded via footnotes, but overall this collection is solid, and the best poems (Zone, Song of the Poorly Loved, Rhenanes, The Bethrothal, The House of the Dead, Vendemiaire) are sublime. This edition's translator (Anne Hyde Greet) offers copious, helpful notes ...more
Keith
Aug 16, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
i enjoyed bits of this. it saddened me to see so much rhyme in the original French that accompanies the more liberal English translations. i was inspired to read Apollinaire after seeing the first few lines of "Zone" referenced in an introduction to Stephen Mitchell's translations of Rilke:

"At last you're tired of this elderly world
Sheperdess O Eiffel Tower this morning the bridges are bleating
You're fed up with living in antiquity"

i liked a lot of the images, but i got lost in the denser poems
...more
Lisa
Aug 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french, fiction, poetry
Best French poetry ever.
Justine
Sep 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
I liked it, but didn't love it. I felt nothing reading some poems, and others really charmed me. My favorite is probably "L'adieu". ...more
Michael A.
Nov 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
very good. Zone, Mirabeau Bridge, The Song of the Poorly Loved, Procession, and The Harvest Month stood out to me the most but I liked all of them
Vlad Stroescu
Apr 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book of poems while I was a young premed student. At that time, I was still avid of French symbolist poetry, and Apollinaire was a big step away from that. ("A la fin tu est las de ce monde ancien") Apollinaire is not at all a symbolist, he is not bored and exotic and artificially violently yearning. While, he is a master of verbal music making, as symbolitst were, he boldly experimented with form and thought content, but at the same time remained profoundly and immediately human, ev ...more
Sarah
Dec 04, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, 5-stars, favoritos
Take a clean sheet of paper, add some serious heliotropes for uplift, but damp down with the melancholy of almonds and gypsies and sad hotels. Note the pallor roseying, the radiance, the soar that switches to hover with the discreet scent of violets and leather. Some rainy alleyways. Paris. Wit an poignancy and spontaneity with an aftertaste you'd have to be an idiot not to appreciate. ...more
Ron Dakron
May 16, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: influences
Appollinaire, charter member of the surrealists, had a wistful and humorous tone that some of his bros and sisters lacked. His poem "Zone" - "You are tired of this ancient world at last" is all he needed to write. But I'm glad he wrote more. (Again, read long ago, not sure if this is the same translation) ...more
David
Jun 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Possibly the best book of poetry I've ever read. Does this say more about the book or how sadly few books of poetry I've read, I'll leave up to you. After you read this, of course. Which you should. I reap upon it all the hyperbolic praise your imagination can muster. ...more
eeva
Aug 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this summer i heard a reading of zone in paris. i thought there was something very special in it.
some of the poems in this book are very awkward and difficult... and some of them make me cry.
Edita
And turning my eyes from all the empty future
I see the whole past growing in myself.

Nothing is dead but what has not become:
*
I have had the courage to look backward.
The cadavers of my days
Mark the way I’ve come and I weep for them.
[…]
In the garden of my memory.
Georgy
Dec 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: poets
If you are an amateur-poet and want to learn, how the modern poetry should look like, this is the book you should begin with.
Beehive Magazine
May 04, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Five stars for the original poems. Three for a fairly unimpressive translation.
Ashley
Jan 26, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
French poetry. My favorite poem in the world is in this collection, "Le Pont Mirabeau" ...more
Laura
Apr 11, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, poetry, france
Apollinaire's poetry is a little weird for me. ...more
Cornelia
Jun 27, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
magnific, brillant deep and beautiful
Hope Lyca Youngblood
Oct 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the french cannon
The poem "Zone" contains one of my favorite lines in all of litterature. "You drink an alchohol as caustic as your life." I am so smitten by it that I used it as a central theme in a short story. ...more
mao
Dec 13, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Zone.
Marc
Apr 24, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Poetry by the French poet Appolinaire. Difficult, hermetic. I think I have to try this later on, in translation, and with sufficient additional explanation.
Kent
Jun 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
With an exclamation point after each star!
Raluca
Jul 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Very original poetry.
Tiyi Ahanda
A difficullt book to read.
Béatrice
Sep 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
and with the first line....

At last you're tired of this elderly world
...more
Audre
Jan 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
[read in french] I love it. it was kind of sad but beautiful all along
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Wilhelm Albert Włodzimierz Apolinary Kostrowicki, known as Guillaume Apollinaire (in French pronounced [ɡijom apɔliˈnɛʁ]) was a French poet, writer, and art critic born in Italy to a Polish mother.

Among the foremost poets of the early 20th century, he is credited with coining the word surrealism and writing one of the earliest works described as surrealist, the play Les Mamelles de Tirésias (1917,
...more

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“Sous le pont Mirabeau coule la Seine
Et nos amours
Faut-il qu'il m'en souvienne
La joie venait toujours après la peine

Vienne la nuit sonne l'heure
Les jours s'en vont je demeure

Les mains dans les mains restons face à face
Tandis que sous
Le pont de nos bras passe
des éternels regards l'onde si lasse

Vienne la nuit sonne l'heure
Les jours s'en vont je demeure

l'amour s'en va comme cette eau courante
L'amour s'en va
Comme la vie est lente
Et comme l'Espérance est violente

Vienne la nuit sonne l'heure
Les jours s'en vont je demeure

Passent les jours et passent les semaines
Ni temps passé
Ni les amours reviennent
Sous le pont Mirabeau coule la Seine

Vienne la nuit sonne l'heure
Les jours s'en vont je demeure”
16 likes
“J'ai cueilli ce brin de bruyère
L'automne est morte souviens-t'en
Nous ne nous verrons plus sur terre
Odeur du temps brin de bruyère
Et souviens-toi que je t'attends”
7 likes
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