“Le Déversoir” by Arthur Teboul, baptism of fire for a singer-poet


Let’s start with Rimbaud. More precisely by My Bohemia, poem on which many college or high school students have looked one day. “I was leaving, fists in my punctured pockets;/ My overcoat also became ideal;/ I was going under the sky, Muse! and I was your stalwart. » Further : “- Tom Thumb dreamer, I shelled in my race / Rhymes. » It is this text, written in the fall of 1870 by the adolescent genius on his return from a runaway, which forever fixed the imagery of the young fiery poets. It is of him that think, consciously or not, those who dream of tamers of words and rhymes, who want to be poets. Like Arthur Teboul, “Dreaming Little Thumb” among others. He is not 17, as Rimbaud remembered him, but 35. In overcoats, these heavy coats worn in the 19th centurye century, he preferred elegant suit jackets with wide lapels. And his pockets are not punctured. They even overflow with papers, loose sheets, magazine pages, notebooks, all covered with fine writing.

Sometimes, that gives songs, for the rock group of which he is the singer, Fire! Chatterton, author of three successful albums – the first two, Here the day (has buried everything) (2015) and The Birdcatcher (2018), are gold records and clay palace (2021) is approaching the platinum label with 90,000 albums sold. These pieces for which he wrote the lyrics, including the hit new world, which has reached more than 18 million plays in streaming, he sings them on stage: the last tour ended with three Olympia in January, after more than 135 dates.

This also gives poems, of which a hundred are grouped together in a collection, The Weir, his first book, to be published on March 16 by Seghers editions. Short texts, produced using the principle of automatic writing invented by André Breton in the Manifesto of Surrealism, in 1924: “Write quickly without a preconceived subject, fast enough not to hold back and not be tempted to read you again (…). Continue as long as you please. Rely on the inexhaustible character of the murmur. » Arthur Teboul followed the century-old method. His “minute poems”, as he defines them, are little stories, impressions, lists of words. There is the absurd, descriptions, the abstract.

“Dusting” poetry

Rimbaud again. His most famous portrait, signed by the photographer Etienne Carjat, where he is a disheveled teenager, is there, on the cover of an anthology, in this large library in the living room of a colorful apartment in a building bar near the Pere Lachaise in Paris. The decoration, inspired by the 1950s, in a vintage spirit in tune with the times, is signed by the singer’s partner, the interior designer Mégane Servadio. They are all there: Breton and a few others in Pléaïde, classics in their pocket, Apollinaire, including a large-format edition of Calligrams is placed on the white piano, like a score. “They are my heroes, all of them”, said Arthur Teboul, pointing to the wall lined with books. Soon, her daughter, born a few months ago, will be able to empty the shelves, with the capacity for destruction that only young children have. For now, his library is intact, obsessively tidied up, containing those authors who provoked in him a ” Blast “.

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