Charles Baudelaire wrote art criticism, essays, and reviews for various journals. His early criticism of contemporary French painters such as Eugene Delacroix and Gustave Courbet earned him a reputation as a discriminating if idiosyncratic critic.
The Sun — Charles Baudelaire
Along the old street on whose cottages are hung
The slatted shutters which hide secret lecheries,
When the cruel sun strikes with increased blows
The city, the country, the roofs, and the wheat fields,
I go alone to try my fanciful fencing,
Scenting in every corner the chance of a rhyme,
Stumbling over words as over paving stones,
Colliding at times with lines dreamed of long ago.
This foster-father, enemy of chlorosis,
Makes verses bloom in the fields like roses;
He makes cares evaporate toward heaven,
And fills with honey hives and brains alike.
He rejuvenates those who go on crutches
And gives them the sweetness and gaiety of girls,
And commands crops to flourish and ripen
In those immortal hearts which ever wish to bloom!
When, like a poet, he goes down into cities,
He ennobles the fate of the lowliest things
And enters like a king, without servants or noise,
All the hospitals and all the castles.
— William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)