22 November 2013

Olivier Larronde in Samoreau, Seine-et-Marne (77)

1927 – 1965
Olivier Larronde was born in La Ciotat, noted for his beauty, and left for Paris in 1943, where he soon met Jean Cocteau and Jean Genet, the latter of whom persuaded the publisher Marc Barbezat to bring out his first collection of poems, Les Barricades mystérieuses, in 1946. This book interested Raymond Queneau and Michel Leiris among a number of other people. The year before, Larronde and his equally beautiful constant companion, protégé and muse Jean-Pierre Lacloche had charmed the likes of Cyril Connolly in London. Larronde was seen as an obviously gifted young man destined for a great future, although he had an attack of epilepsy and started self-medicating with opium for it.
 His second collection of poetry wasn't published until thirteen years later, in 1959: Rien voilà l’ordre, which is an anagram of his name, and the book was liberally illustrated by Giacometti. But epilepsy, opium and alcohol took their toll and Larronde died at 38. His third book of poetry, L'Arbre à lettres, was published the year after his death. He is seen by some as belonging to the poète maudit tradition, particularly like Rimbaud.

He was buried in Samoreau cemetery next to Mallarmé, his favourite poet. Many years later (in fact just seven years ago) he was joined by
Jean-Pierre Lacloche.

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