Aphelion Issue 296, Volume 28
July 2024 --
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Walking the beach with the Marquis De Sade

by Jean Jones

Nothing is essentially born, nothing essentially perishes, all is but the action and reaction of matter; all is like the ocean billows which ever rise and fall, like the tides of the sea, ebbing and flowing endlessly, without there being either the loss or the gain of a drop in the volume of the waters"
—Marquis De Sade

Me: Tell me how you wrote the 120 Days of Sodom-
De Sade: I wrote it when I was imprisoned in the Bastille.
Me: I heard the crowds of the French Revolution released you and asked you to be a judge in the executions of the royalty and you declined. Is this true?
De Sade: I was an elected delegate to the National Convention.
Me: What does that mean?
De Sade: I was there until the Reign of Terror started.
Me: The beheadings, the guillotine?
De Sade: I was gone by then.
Me: What did you think of it?
De Sade: A joke! The same people who had me placed in the Bastille were begging me for their lives!
Me: And your response?
De Sade: Good luck!
Me: Your opinion of Napoleon?
De Sade: Better than royalty!
Me: The American revolution?
De Sade: As hypocritical as ours!
Me: What do you think of this beach?
De Sade: It reminds me of "the tides of the sea…"

© 2023 Jean Jones

Jean Jones has an MFA in Creative Writing Poetry from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio. He teaches English as a Second Language part-time at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, and is regularly published by Horror Zine and Aphelion Webzine.

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