The Anachronistic Romantic


Romantics are out of place. There is nothing to be done for them. They are not hopeless, just mad. Hallmark, everyday romantics are not in the running. They do not count. The real romantics are the equivalent of the early Christian martyrs. They know they are bound to die. And that is an acceptable situation. True romantics would rather die than renounce their faith in their special insanity. So die they do, by the numbers, one might suspect.

There is trouble with them; it comes off them like a fog. It is a fine and subtle disease, and once  you have caught it… Well, let’s say this: one cannot catch it, because one already has it. The romantic is born with this exquisite sickness, and must live a life in which that sickness fogs, then illuminates life, by turns.

It is a nostalgic longing for something never before experienced, which should, then, be a lie. But it is not a lie, not a bit of it. It is the very essence of romanticism (if we can call it an ism at all), which is a deep impulse, a killing longing for something transcendent and at the same time sensual, sexual, demanding, hungry. It is the transcendent rooted in the fevered now of desire; an almost impossible combination. And yet we continue to live for it, to love it, to become drunken, misshapen, feckless, hopeless, musical, suicidal, prayerful, for a taste of its reification, in which it dies.

Romanticism, though not an ism, is a highly political, but subterranean state of being. The romantic lives for the realization of deep love married to deep loss. The romantic acknowledges the almost, imperceptible, finality of loss and failure as it encroaches on every breath. The romantic continues to breathe and live for the impossible despite the facts, the sickness, the palpable death and abusive absurdity of living in human society. And it is political by making politics vanish altogether from the equation. As such, it is anarchic.

The romantic craves the society which kills the possibility of realizing such magnificent, suiciding, desire; because it is only in the society of other humans that this romanticism becomes possible, and at the same time virtually impossible. It lives through, is nourished by, nothing else but the devouring desire of another partner romantic. Is that its root then? To be an inherent, tragic contradiction? A pairing of annihilating realities?

Romance desires transcendence on the superhuman scale, but is forced to live it out in human, all-too-human pettiness. This is the root, the very key to romanticism. It must love passionately, and die in so doing. It can never realize what it so desires. It is a kiss suspended, a sexual coupling given beautiful flesh but bound, almost sundered, by the anatomical mechanics of lust in motion. In this, the deepest of inter-human knowing, the romantic wants sex to be a prayer. And since so few know how to wed prayer and fuck, then we fail; and the romantic celebrates that failure by dying, through martyrdom to this, our first psycho-biological failure. That first failure is the effort to render the primal ooze lyrical, idyllic and palpably beautiful.        

The romantic cannot do so, in much the same way that it cannot render the mundane battleground and furniture of petty life into something akin to prayer and orgasm. They seem forever separate, and it is that failure inherent between the human individual and the societal cipher, which romanticism always laments, and rises up to solve by the alchemy of sex, death and eternal hunger.



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8 responses to “The Anachronistic Romantic

  1. I love the picture Thanks for connecting on Linked In
    Every now and then I read some of your book but I am swamped!!
    I dropped in to tell you I have commissioned a Russian women to write a Bog post about Leningrad – Fish
    I will let you know when she has done so.
    Is every thing going well?

    • Hi Jo. I was thinking about dropping you a line yesterday. Nice to hear from you. I really do like that picture with the Romantic bit. 🙂 I will drop in on your blog again tomorrow, and keep check to see the piece on Leningrad. Russia is one of those countries I have always wished to get to. Might happen. You can never tell.

      Glad you’re still reading Kronos… bit by bit. We’ve had a disgusting, humid heat wave for the last week or more and my brain slowly shut down. I have now reversed my schedule and am sleeping in the day and living in the late afternoon into early morning. I’ve actually found my brain again.

      I hope all is great with you. Cheers Aldous

      • I am thinking about putting Russia on my ESL list.
        If we coincide lets have a cidar in I think it is called St Peter’sberg
        I sleep funny time now that writing is my means of making a living,

      • Definitely, cider in St. Petersburg. If they have cider there. 🙂 My parents have been there and they say it is unforgettable. Incredibly beautiful. Are you writing a lot about education – and/or other things. Inquiring minds want to know….

        Best to you Aldous

      • absolutely! I have published two educational texts.
        Now the hard part begins.
        If you would like a free download we have a sampler
        Anyone who can find a mistake in the sampler gets a free book! It is fun , Jo

      • I know what you mean about the hard part. Things seem to move at a snail’s pace after the actual publication. But I am a firm believer that there is a point of ‘critical mass’ after which your name is known and people are buying in greater numbers. It’s just a matter of keeping the product out there. Interesting ‘teachers paying teachers’ concept. 🙂

        Keep well. How’s the Queensland climate right now?

        Best Aldous

      • Qld climate is just a bit nippy (which is good)
        Are you a teacher? Jo

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