575 - Baudelaire's Cats

some male poets have a schizophrenic
friend who is a poet too and maybe does
the same illness for them. not asthenic
young men - but rather feline and specious

in all except their arts of silence
and reserve - imperilled when once broken.
a bottle uncorked for the divulgence
of wise wine. he-sphinx dissolved when woken

to love and speech - for which lips and voice
were wetted - and no woman made amends.
whether these poor boys had any choice
but to serve as Baudelaire’s cats - depends

whether we had treasured their solitude -
preferred them sealed - kept in their attitude.

Woodford Halse
7 September 2021

Read Baudelaire’s ” Les Fleurs du Mal” LXVI ” Les Chats”, perhaps. A sad mystery of some poets’ and artists’ lives. Think of Goethe and Jakob Lenz for instance.