Saturday, June 04, 2005

Saturday Night Lovecraft

Saturday night is a good night for H.P. Lovecraft because I've pretty much caught up with my entire blogroll and have time for some superfluous posting (as may be evidenced by my previous post). First, here's a quote:
I choose weird stories because they suit my inclination best--one of my strongest and most persistent wishes being to achieve, momentarily, the illusion of some strange suspension or violation of the galling limitations of time, space, and natural law which forever imprison us and frustrate our curiosity about the infinite cosmic spaces...
This is not from any of his stories. I don't know exactly where it came from, but I believe it is from one of his letters.

Now, here's another Lovecraft poem. As I said before, he wrote a lot of poetry, most of it quite mundane and having nothing to do with weird tales or infinite cosmic spaces. But this one has a definite streak of weirdness, and that overall creepy feeling that makes it one of my favorites.

The Cats

Babels of blocks to the high heavens towering
Flames of futility swirling below;
Poisonous fungi in brick and stone flowering,
Lanterns that shudder and death-lights that glow.

Black monstrous bridges across oily rivers,
Cobwebs of cable to nameless things spun;
Catacomb deeps whose dank chaos delivers
Streams of live foeter that rots in the sun.

Colour and splendour, disease and decaying,
Shrieking and ringing and crawling insane,
Rabbles exotic to stranger-gods praying,
Jumbles of odour that stifle the brain.

Legions of cats from the alleys nocturnal.
Howling and lean in the glare of the moon,
Screaming the future with mouthings infernal,
Yelling the Garden of Pluto's red rune.

Tall towers and pyramids ivy'd and crumbling,
Bats that swoop low in the weed-cumber'd streets;
Bleak Arkham bridges o'er rivers whose rumbling
Joins with no voice as the thick horde retreats.

Belfries that buckle against the moon totter,
Caverns whose mouths are by mosses effac'd,
And living to answer the wind and the water,
Only the lean cats that howl in the wastes.

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