On the day after Christmas 1926, avant-garde poet Henri Michaux began a year-long journey to Ecuador as "a man who knows neither how to travel nor how to keep a journal". In the process, he created the first truly modern travel book, a work of pointed observation and sensual, even hallucinogenic, poetry and prose.Michaux set out to record a journey but his vivid descriptions, his unexpected leaps of thought, provide a log unlike any other, one obsessed not with how a traveler interacts with the world but how the world -- the mundane and the fantastic -- invades and changes the traveler. Michaux presents both a profound vision of place and a method of liberating the child, the visionary, and the poet in any serious traveler. He is a one-man civilization: modest, available, open to experiment, and utterly absorbed by the forces of a vision which will also become the reader's.
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