He was born in Paris, France on rue Coquilliére. As a poet he was noted for his poetry of atmosphere and detail. His work spanned numerous literary movements. Before he reached 19 years of age, Fargue had already published in L'Art littéraire in 1894 and his important poem Tancrède appeared in the magazine Pan in 1895.
From 1893 to 1895, he enjoyed a brief but intense relationship with his reputed literary collaborator, Alfred-Henry Jarry, the precursor of surrealism and credited with having invented the Theater of the Absurd, a fellow student at Henri IV. Though Jarry jested often about his homosexuality, this is his only known relationship, and it provided the material for his semiautobiographical play, Haldernablou (1894). (Picture: Alfred Jarry)
As an opponent of the surrealists, Fargue became a member of the Symbolist poetry circle connected with Le Mercure de France. Rilke, Joyce and others declared that Fargue was at the very forefront of modern poetry.
He was also a poet of Paris, and later in his career he published two books about the city, D'après Paris (1931) and Le piéton de Paris (1939). His earliest work is divided between Paris prowlings and intimate scenes of childhood and nature.
He published a book of recollections about his friend, the composer Ravel. He was a member of the Apaches and remained a lifelong friend of Ravel. One of his poems, "Rêves", was set to music by Ravel in 1927.
He died 1947 in Paris and is buried in the Cimetière du Montparnasse. Federico Mompou dedicated No. 12 of his Cançons i Danses to Fargue's memory.
The Paris Diary & The New York Diary 1951-1961 by Ned Rorem
Paperback: 399 pages
Publisher: Da Capo Press (March 22, 1998)
Amazon: The Paris Diary & The New York Diary 1951-1961
When The Paris Diary exploded on the scene in 1966 there had never been a book in English quite like it: Its intimate combination of personal, literary, and social insights was unprecedented. Rorem's self-portrait of the artist as a young man, written between 1951 and 1955, was also a mirror of the times, depicting the now vanished milieu of Cocteau, Eluard, Gide, Landowska, Boulez, the Vicomtesse de Noailles, and others whose paths crossed with Rorem's in such settings as Paris, Morocco, and Italy. The New York Diary, published the following year, pictured the period between 1956 and 1960, when Rorem had returned to America. The diaries marked the beginnings of Gay Liberation, not because Rorem made a special issue of his sexuality, but because he did not; rather, he wrote of his affairs frankly and unashamedly. A casualness informs each sensual entry, and the overall tone is at once bratty and brilliant, insecure and vain, loving and cultured, but, above all, honest and entertaining.
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