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A Flower’s Evening – full version

Today’s a day of firsts.

It’s the first day of the first month of the new year.

My translation of Catulle Mendès’ story, “Le Soir d’une fleur”, has just been published in the first edition of a new literary journal, Book of Matches. The story in English, “A Flower’s Evening”, is about a small ragged girl who finds a wilted flower discarded by rich racegoers. A hint about the subject: the journal editors were reminded of Cosette in Les Misérables. Go to their web site to read it for free on page 92: http://Book of Matches

It’s the first of a few of my translations that will be published this year.

This is the first time it has been published in full. Back in April a part of this translation was published by another blogger, Parallel Texts.

And, finally, the story was the first in Mendès’ collection, Les Oiseaux bleus. The collection had a fairy tale thread with the exception of “Le Soir d’une fleur”. Unlike the fantasy characters in the other stories, this girl is real and plays out her own fairy tale, observed all the while by a poet who narrates the story. The poet encourages us to look closely at human behaviour and to have faith in imagination, for though this girl may be unfortunate to have wretches for parents, she has a rich imagination that allows her to escape them briefly.

Please let me know if you read it. Especially if you enjoy it as much as I did.

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