And what about Baudelaire – that syphilis injected dandy of modern life? How does Baudelaire fare in Breton’s shadow? The man with a jerky walk and who believed in the impossibility of man’s action or thought except being some evil force? What about his life compared to Breton? A stable life not of the senses but of a relentless search for certain fatal roots of sexual desire. It is not from Jeanne Duval for sure – his mistress for twenty years – that we would get the story. But from his mother. The twenty-six year-old Caroline Archimbaut Dufays whom his father married. Then his step-father remarried after his father died. But Baudelaire was the one who worshipped her till he died in her arms. In a letter to her he had written these lines: “We are obviously destined to love one another, to end our lives as honestly and justly as possible. And yet, in the awful circumstances in which I find myself, I am convinced that one of us will kill the other.” Unlike Breton, the lyrical escapist, Baudelaire is tied to that moment of birth. For him it was also the moment of a death. One dark day Baudelaire must have fallen in love with Caroline. He must have fumbled and taken her name in secret many times in the night. Caroline, mother, Caroline, mother, mother, Caroline, Caroline, mother, Caroline, mother, mother, mother, Caroline, mother, Caroline, Caroline, Caroline, mother, go to hell, Caroline, Caroline, I love you. He must have put that name to flames night after night and never failed to hold it when it came back unscarred. The sense of his evil was spread in the flowers. It was spread among the whores, the angels, the “condemned women” in Les Fleurs du mal (Flowers of Evil).