ARTHUR RIMBAUD, French poet born (d. 1891); a French poet, born in Charleville. His influence on modern literature, music and art has been pervasive. Born into the provincial middle class of Charleville (now part of Charleville-Mezieres) in the Ardennes departmement in northeastern France. He was the second child of Captain Frédéric and Vitalie Rimbaud (née Cuif). It is evident through his writing that he never felt loved by his mother. As a boy he was a restless but brilliant student. By the age of fifteen he had won many prizes and composed original verses and dialogues in  Latin. In 1870 his teacher Georges Izambard became Rimbaud's literary mentor and his original French verses began to improve rapidly.


He frequently ran away from home and may have briefly joined the Paris Commune of 1871, which he portrayed in his poem L’orgie parisenne (The Parisian Orgy or, "Paris Repopulates"). He may have been raped by drunken Communard soldiers (as his poem Le Coeur supplicié ("The Tortured Heart") perhaps suggests). By this time he had become an anarchist, started drinking and amused himself by shocking the local bourgeoisie with his shabby dress and long hair. At the same time he wrote to Izambard and Paul Demeny about his method for attaining poetical transcendence or visionary power through a "long, intimidating, immense and rational derangement of all the senses" (Les lettres du Voyant ["The Letters of the Seer"]).


He returned to Paris in late September 1871 at the invitation of the eminent Symbolist poet Paul Verlaine (after Rimbaud had sent him a letter containing several samples of his work) and resided briefly in Verlaine's home. Verlaine, who was married, promptly fell in love with the sullen, blue-eyed, overgrown (5 ft 10 in), light-brown-haired adolescent. They became lovers and led a wild, vagabond-like life spiced by absinthe and hashish. They scandalized the Parisian literary coterie on account of the outrageous behavior of Rimbaud, the archetypical enfant terrible, who throughout this period continued to write strikingly visionary verse. Rimbaud's and Verlaine's stormy love affair took them to London in September 1872, Verlaine abandoning his wife and infant son (both of whom he had abused in his alcoholic rages).


In July 1873, Rimbaud committed himself to journey to Paris with or without Verlaine. In a drunken rage, Verlaine shot at him, one of the two shots striking the 18-year-old in the left wrist. Rimbaud considered the wound superficial and at first did not have Verlaine charged. After this, Verlaine and his mother accompanied Rimbaud to a Brussels train station where Verlaine "behaved as if he were insane". This made Rimbaud "fear that he might give himself over to new excesses", so he turned and ran away. In his words, "it was then I (Rimbaud) begged a police officer to arrest him (Verlaine)." Verlaine was arrested and subjected to a humiliating medico-legal examination, including his intimate correspondence with his lover and the accusations of Verlaine's wife about the nature of their relationship. Rimbaud eventually withdrew the complaint, but the judge sentenced Verlaine to two years in prison.


Rimbaud returned home to Charleville and completed his Une Saison en Enfer (A Season in Hell) in prose, widely regarded as one of the pioneering instances of modern Symbolist writing and a description of that "drôle de ménage" (domestic farce) life with Verlaine, his "pitoyable frère" ("pitiful brother") and "vierge folle" ("mad virgin") to whom he was "l'époux infernal" ("infernal groom"). In 1874 he returned to London with the poet German Nouveau and put together his groundbreaking Illuminations, including the first-ever two French poems in free verse. Eventually, he wandered the world, finally becoming a trader in Abyssinia. He died, aged 37, with the name of his faithful native boy, Djani, on his lips.

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ANDY HUMM is a journalist, activist born on this date. He is currently co-host, with Ann Northrup, of TV news program Gay USA


Humm began hosting gay news programs with Pride and Progress, aired on the Gay Cable Network (GCN), in 1985. He co-anchored GCN's nightly coverage of the 1988 Democratic and Republican National Conventions. Humm also did floor coverage of the 1992 Democratic National Convention.[2] From 1986 to 1995, Humm was Director of Education at the Hetrick-Martin Institute for Lesbian and Gay Youth.


Following Pride and Progress, Humm became the host of Gay USA. In 1996, he began co-hosting the show with veteran journalist and activist Ann Northrop.[2]


In 2000, Humm provided floor coverage of the Republican National Convention.[2]


Humm has interviewed numerous people from both the public and private sectors. Politicians interviewed by Humm, titled according to their political position at the time of the interview, include Governors Bill Clinton and George Pataki; Senators Bill Bradley, Joe Lieberman, Chuck Schumer, and Bob Dole; Representatives New Gingrich, Dick Cheney and Richard Gephardt; Activists interviewed by Humm include Jesse Jackson, Gloria Steinem, Al Sharpton, and Larry Kramer. Humm has interviewed actors Matthew Broderick, Ian McKellen and authors Alan Hollinghurst, Ned Rorem and Martin Duberman.


Humm has been interviewed on the CBS Evening News,, the Geraldo Show, Charlie Rose, and  Fox TVs Hannity & Colmes, America's Talking with Chris Matthews, The Maury Povich Show, the Alan Colmes and Barry Farber radio shows, all New York City TV newscasts, and is a frequent guest on NY-1 TVs Inside City Hall. Humm's opinion-editorials have appeared in The New York Times, New York Post, Daily News and Newsday. 


From 1977 to 1991, Humm served as a spokesperson for the Coalition for Lesbian and Gay Rights which helped guide New York City's LGBT rights law through the City Council. He was a New York City Human Rights Commissioner from 1991 to 1993.


Humm’s work in the LGBT and AIDS Communities has been honored by the Human Rights Campaign, New York University,, the  AIDS and Adolescents Network, Advocates for Youth, PFLAG, the Cincinnati Gay and Lesbian Coalition, the Office of the Public Advocate, the Bar Association for Human Rights of Greater New York, and the Arkansas Lesbian and Gay Task Force. In 1990, Humm was named an Arkansas Traveler by then-Governor Bill Clinton

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EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY, American poet (b.  1892); an American lyrical poet and playwright and the first woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. She was also known for her unconventional, bohemian lifestyle and her many love affairs. She used the pseudonym Nancy Boyd for her prose work. Millay, who was bisexual, had relationships with several other students during her time at Vassar, then a woman's college. In January 1921 she went to Paris, where she met sculptor Thelma Wood, with whom she had a romantic relationship. During her years in Greenwich Village and Paris she also had many relationships with men, including the literary critic Edmund Wilson, who unsuccessfully proposed marriage to her in 1920.


In 1923, she married Eugene Jan Boissevain, then the 43-year-old widower of labor lawyer and war correspondent Ineze Milholland. Boissevain greatly supported her career and took primary care of domestic responsibilities. They lived near Austerlitz, New York, at a farmhouse they named Steepletop. Millay's marriage with Boissevain was an open one, with both taking other lovers. Millay's most significant other relationship during this time was with the poet George Dillon, fourteen years her junior, for whom a number of her sonnets were written. Millay also collaborated with Dillon on Flowers of Evil, a translation of Charles Baudelaire’s's Les Fleurs du Mal. Boissevain died in 1949 of lung cancer. Millay was found dead at the bottom of the stairs in her house on October 19, 1950, having broken her neck in a fall.

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DIVINE, American actor born (ne Glenn Milstead) (d. 1988); best known for his drag persona, Divine. In the 1970s, Milstead starred as Divine in a number of New York City theater pieces, including Tom Eyen’s classic camp women's prison drama, Women Behind Bars, which was a major off-Broadway hit in 1976, playing the lead role of the evil matron, Pauline. Divine returned to the stage in another Tom Eyen off-Broadway play, The Neon Woman, where he played the role of Flash Storm, the owner of a sleazy strip club plagued by a series of murders.


Eyen's play was loosely based on famed burlesque entertainer Gypsy Rose Lee's book, "The G-String Murders". He appeared with the Cockettes in San Francisco. After their New York bomb, the Cockettes came back to San Francisco and performed their final show in the summer of 1972, "Journey to the Center of Uranus." Divine, joined the group, in her San Francisco debut, performing her song "The Crab at the Center of Uranus" dressed as a lobster.


Milstead starred in a number of films and was part of the regular cast known as the Dreamlanders. The Dreamlanders appeared in many of John Waters' earlier works such as Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble, Polyester, and Hairspray.


In 1985 Milstead appeared opposite Tab Hunter in their hit Lust in the Dust, repeating their successful pairing in Polyester. He is also remembered as a major character in the documentary homage Divine Trash by Steve Yeager, covering the life and work of John Waters.


In 1988, the British film The Fruit Machine, also known as Wonderland in the United States, used Milstead's songs in a nightclub disco dance sequence that showcased an early Robbie Coltrane in drag as "Annabelle", the club's owner (a cross between Divine and Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz).


Late in his career, Milstead also played in non-drag roles in his last three films: Trouble in Mind, Hairspray, and Out of the Dark. In Hairspray he played two roles, one male and one female (which he had first done in the earlier Female Trouble).


Here’s what Divine had to say about his “Edna Turnblad” (and honey...he ain’t no John Travolta!):


“For all those people who always thought I was nothing more than a drag queen, wait until they see what I agreed to look like in Hairspray! Drag queens are supposed to be hung up on glamooouur. Meanwhile, on my first day on location, I came out as Edna Turnblad--in my flip-flops and hideous housedress, with varicose veins drawn on my nubble-shaved legs and everything that is wrong with me accentuated, schlepping along in these pin curls and barely any makeup--and I walked right by the crew. Just kept going. Not one person on the set recognized me or even noticed me, because I looked like half the women in Baltimore. I had to go up to John and stand face-front for him to realize who I was. He was thrilled. I was crushed.”


Divine was the inspiration for the design of Ursula the Sea-Witch in the Disney classic The Little Mermaid.

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