The Moon in search of itself 

A radio extravaganza 

In 1947, Claudel rewrites for the radio L’Endormie, his farce of 1887 which bothered him enormously. For this he mixes memories of  L’Ours et la Lune with some remains of L’endormie With this work, he tries to give a meaning to his former play ( “from anecdote to parable”) but also to replace the pessimism of his youth with the providentialist optimism that characterizes his mature works. The young Poet has transgressed the frontier. He has passed into the upside-down world, “on the other side of the metaphor”, but also of morality. He is therefore tried by the Court of Fauns. Stingy with punishment, this one pushes him into the arms of a woman, the Moon, “district of geological gruyere in the grip of libido”, which represents all the temptations of the flesh and poetry. A kind of buffoonish Socratic dialogue, the play offers a reflection on the role of love and guilt in the quest for salvation. Searching for themselves and their souls in the midst of the Bacchic fury of youth, the Poet and the Moon achieve the inner liberation symbolized by the final beatitudes of a mystical-jester marriage. Written on the threshold of death, the play allows Claudel to take stock of his life by mocking himself and his work, but also to stage the Redemption to which he aspires. 

Sever Martinot-Lagarde