HOW CHARLES BAUDELAIRE’S POETRY CHANGED MY LIFE

A very poignant, personal essay by Flemish author Bob Van Laerhoven today at #MotiveMeansOpportunity

MotiveMeansOpportunity

By: Bob Van Laerhoven

Picture this, a lonely and vaguely melancholic, 17 year old boy in 1970, living in a smallbaudelairesrevenge_cvr Flemish/Belgian village, surrounded by pine woods, at the border with The Netherlands.

Later in his life, that boy will learn the hard way that border places are often rough and dangerous places, woods or no woods.

But now, he’s searching for something that will appease a shapeless longing in him.  His parents,  poor and hard working people,  wish that he’ll become a postman.  Regular job, steady income, smooth life.

Healthy too: each day biking many miles in the flatlands of De Kempen, that Flemish region of small farmers and workers in Antwerp’s harbor, distributing  letters, written in the gnarly handwriting  of simple people.

Life is tough. Don’t go out late. Don’t catch a cold. Don’t drink. Work hard. Build a house. Be normal.

That’s what simple people say to…

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