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Illuminations include some autobiographical allusions to his voyant (visionary) period, which began in 1869; but Illuminations is neither a confession nor an apology. Its several dozen short prose works and two free-verse poems transcend prose grammar by allowing their words to drift away from their dictionary definitions. Ever-elusive, relentless, overflowing with sinuous cadences, Illuminations transcends Une Saison en Enfer as it in turn had transcended Rimbaud’s early verses. Some scholars even propose that some of the Illuminations may have been written after Une Saison, which supposedly marked his farewell to literature.
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