"A Ballad of Kisses," The original holograph manuscript of an apparently unpublished erotic/humorous poem dating from the period of Crowley's first involvement with his "Scarlet Woman" Hilarion (Jeanne Robert Foster); with whom he was then in an adulterous relationship. Aleister CROWLEY.

"A Ballad of Kisses," The original holograph manuscript of an apparently unpublished erotic/humorous poem dating from the period of Crowley's first involvement with his "Scarlet Woman" Hilarion (Jeanne Robert Foster); with whom he was then in an adulterous relationship.

ND ( 1915 ). A seemingly unpublished twelve-line poem, written in manuscript in black ink on the recto only of a single sheet of 10 7/8 x 8 3/8 inch Palace Hotel (San Francisco) stationery. Hasty composition and various corrections suggest that this is the first - and probably only - draft. The poem takes the form of an exchange, most likely between a married couple, in which the husband asks his wife to explain various marks on her body, each of which appears to be evidence of a passionate encounter. She responds to each question, with an innocent but unlikely explanation, for example: [Husband] "What is that strange stain on your thigh?" [Wife] "There are crumbs in the bed where I lie" and so on. The final four lines reveal the true nature of his suspicion: [Husband] "What makes you speak so faint and low?" [Wife] "I'm not very well, dear; I don't know." [Husband] "I suppose it's coincidence, my dear; at first I thought Crowley might have been here." There is no doubt that the poem was written for the poet Jeanne Roberts Foster (1879-1970), whom Crowley met in June 1915. The two were passionately attracted to each other and soon commenced an adulterous affair, which required some subterfuge as Foster's husband was close at hand. Although their relationship was relatively brief it was significant for both: Crowley considered her to he one of his Scarlet Women, dubbing her Soror Hilarion or "the cat", and she was the inspiration of a considerable amount of his poetry - including the mostly unpublished poetic cycle "The Golden Rose" and was also the muse of his important magickal work, "Liber Aleph." There is a single crease across the centre from having been folded, and the page is toned with a number of small tears and creases around the edges. A wonderfully evocative document, an artefact of the-then clandestine romance between Crowley and his partner in sex-magick (Scarlet Woman) Soror Hilarion. Item #68304

Sold

See all items by