Poetry isn’t very extreme. It can be very enjoyable and insightful, but it usually won’t drag you into any adrenaline-packed life or death situations. It may come as a surprise then to find out just how much the lives of acclaimed, renowned poets are filled to the brim with reckless adventures. These are a few of the wildest stories of some of the most daring poets.
The Manifold Duels of Alexander Pushkin
Alexander Pushkin was infamous for his short temper and incredibly sensitive sense of honor. Over the course of his short, 37-year life, Alexander was involved in 29 duels, of which the last one got the better of him. He was notorious for picking fights over the most mundane things: Remarks about prose, insults hurled at his companions, disputes over the women he courted, he once even went as far as to duel somebody over the weather.
Rockstar Lord Byron
George Gordon, A.K.A. Lord Byron, was one of the original ‘rockstars’. He propagated the frivolous and untamed lifestyle often associated with the men and women on the top of the entertainment industry today. Descending from a noble family, Byron turned the hall of his family’s home into a shooting gallery, he often drank from a cup formed from a human skull, hung around with Albanian warlords, and kept a pet bear in Cambridge. He was also a hyperactive womanizer, famed for having a love life so rich that his doctors urged him to cut back on his romantic affairs.
Rimbaud, the Young Delinquent
Rimbaud’s short-lived career in writing spanned his adolescence and came to a halt at the tender age of twenty years old. Always the troublemaker, the teenage Rimbaud capitalized on the chaos of the Franko-Prussian war to run away from his childhood home. He would then live a turbulent life in poverty with his manifold lovers, only to renounce poetry altogether and settle for steady run-of-the-mill working life.