Blind Read Through: H.P. Lovecraft; The Crawling Chaos
This was a fairly early iteration of Lovecraft’s work, and a clear indication of the direction that he intended to go in the Dream-Cycle. This is a collaboration, so it is a bit of a stretch from Lovecraft’s other work, and frankly, not nearly as precise and put together. The language is pulled together with cheap word positioning (“the doomed shack”. The only reason doomed is used here is to give the story a creepier effect, when in reality, it shouldn’t have been written as a creepy story, but as a cosmic horror story because the whole planet is doomed) and a rambling tone, when on close inspection of Lovecraft’s other works, he tends to have loose meaning and trite verbiage, but it is precise. Where it isn’t in this story.
Basically we follow the narrator into a cosmic horror dream. The use of Opium is prevalent, though the narrator says that this experience is neither an Opium dream, nor a fever dream. He goes on a cosmic journey, meeting gods and leaving the earth, only to find that there is a cosmic event that has destroyed the world.
The plot line is a Lovecraftian story, but what is absent is all the beautiful references, and subtleties. From the preface of the story Lovecraft thought highly of Winifred Jackson who this story is based on, but I fear that his collaboration with Elizabeth Berkeley sapped the story of it’s needed umph.
Join me tomorrow for a Blind Read through of “The Walls of Eryx”, another collaboration.