Baudelaire's 'Le Voyage': The Dimension of Myth

It has been assumed that the voyage that follows the victory of Time in the seventh section of Baudelaire's "Le Voyage" signifies death and the eighth section recounts other aspects of the same voyage. However, a comparison to epic models suggests that the voyage on the Sea of Darkness is a modern version of Odysseus's journey to the Underworld and is distinct from the voyage of death at the end. The voices on the Sea of Darkness, like the Homeric Sirens, are figural representations of the traveler's own desires and memories. The poem does not explore the unknown but humbles and ultimately reaffirms a tradition. (NB)
Babuts, Nicolae
Volume 1997 Spring-Summer; 25(3-4): 348-59