cómo se passa la vida,
cómo se viene la muerte
cúan presto se va el plazer....
Coplas por la muerte de su padre
wages murder the first caress
the photograph in evidence
the diagram of the village
we had the dream of water
a bitter draft from a broken cup
"C'est un homme
from the rubble of information
Guy Debord (1931-1994), filmmaker, writer, and revolutionary, was one of the founders of the Situationist International. He is best known as the author of THE SOCIETY OF THE SPECTACLE (1967); his other books include COMMENTS ON THE SOCIETY OF THE SPECTACLE (1988) and PANEGYRIC I (1989). Debord made the first French translation of Jorge Manrique's COPLAS POR LA MUERTE DE SU PADRE.
The text of the sixth stanza is taken verbatim from the fourth canto of LES CHANTS DE MALDOROR by Lautréamont, a favorite writer of Debord's.
The penultimate line of the seventh stanza is from Debord's MÉMOIRES (1958), the last line of which reads: "Je voulais parler la belle langue de mon siècle." In his collage text, this was the only line that Debord himself authored.
"Stanzas on the Death of Guy Debord" originally appeared in RealPoetik (1996).
James Brook | Mudlark No. 18
Contents | Tune of Wreckage