20131028

//Crowds//
by Charles Baudelaire 
Market Street, San Francisco
It is not given to every man to take a bath in a multitude: to enjoy crowds is an art; and only he to whom in his cradle a fairy has bequeathed the love of masks and disguises, the hate of home and the passion of travel, can plunge, at the expense of humankind, into a debauch of vitality.

Multitude, solitude: equal and interchangeable terms to the active and fertile poet. He who does not know how to people his solitude, does not know either how to be alone in a busy crowd. 

Telegraph & Bancroft, Berkeley
The poet enjoys this incomparable privilege, to be at once himself and others. Like those wandering souls that go about seeking bodies, he enters at will the personality of every man. For him alone, every place is vacant; and if certain places seem to be closed to him, it is because in his eyes they are not worth the trouble of visiting.

The solitary and thoughtful stroller derives a singular intoxication from this universal communion. He who mates easily with the crowd knows feverish joys that must be for ever unknown to the egoist, shut up like a strong-box, and to the sluggard, imprisoned like a shell-fish. He adopts for his own all the occupations, all the joys and all the sorrows that circumstance sets before him. 


Frat House, Berkeley

What men call love is small indeed, narrow and weak, compared with this ineffable orgy, this sacred prostitution of the soul which gives itself up wholly (poetry and charity!) to the unexpected as it occurs, to the stranger as he passes. 

It is good sometimes that the happy people of this world should learn, were it only to humble their foolish pride for an instant, that there are higher, wider, and rarer joys than theirs. The founders of colonies, the shepherds of nations, the missionary priests, exiled to the ends of the earth, doubtless know something of these mysterious intoxications; and, in the midst of the vast family that their genius has raised about them, the must sometimes laugh at the thought of those who pity them for their chaste lives and troubles fortunes. 
On top of the Campanile, Berkeley